Paul de Man Quotes

The writer's language is to some degree the product of his own action; he is both the historian and the agent of his own language.
Paul De Man (1919-1983), Belgian-born U.S. literary critic. Blindness and Insight, ch. 8 (1971).
Fashion is like the ashes left behind by the uniquely shaped flames of the fire, the trace alone revealing that a fire actually took place.
Paul De Man (1919-1983), Belgian-born-U.S. literary critic. repr. In Blindness and Insight (1971, rev. 1983). "Literary History and Literary Modernity," lecture, Sept. 1969.
The ambivalence of writing is such that it can be considered both an act and an interpretive process that follows after an act with which it cannot coincide. As such, it both affirms and denies its own nature.
Paul De Man (1919-1983), Belgian-born U.S. literary critic. lecture, Sept. 1969, repr. In Blindness and Insight (1971, rev. 1983). "Literary History and Literary Modernity."