Category Archives: Quotes

Quotes, from a variety of sources, related to teaching and learning–somewhat more loosely defined than in other categories on Mark’s Text Terminal.

Rotten Reviews: Brave New World

“A lugubrious and heavy-handed piece of propaganda.”

New York Herald Tribune

“… a somewhat amusing book; a bright man can do a good deal with two or three simple ideas.”

Granville HicksNew Republic

“There are no surprises in it; and if he had no surprises to give us why would Mr. Huxley have bothered to turn this essay in indignation into a novel?”

New Statesman and Nation

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

The Bridge

“A long poem (1930) by the US poet Hart Crane (1899-1932). The work is a Whitmanesque celebration of America, its culture and history, and the image of Brooklyn Bridge acts as a link between past and present, a symbol of imagination and striving:

‘O Sleepless as the river under thee,
Vaulting the sea, the prairies dreaming sod,
Unto us lowliest sometime sweep, descend
And of the curveship lend a myth to God.’
Hart Crane, The Bridge, proem ‘To Brooklyn Bridge’

Brooklyn Bridge is a suspension bridge in New York City, spanning the East River and so linking Brooklyn and Manhattan Island. It was built in 1869-83, and incorporates a number of impressive technical innovations. With its tough, angular, futuristic structure, it became something of an icon for American modernists, being the subject of semi-abstract paintings by, for example, John Marin (1910-1932) and Joseph Stella (1917-1918). More recently, David and Victoria (‘Posh Spice’) Beckham chose to call their son Brooklyn because he was conceived while they crossed the bridge.”

Excerpted from: Crofton, Ian, ed. Brewer’s Curious Titles. London: Cassell, 2002.

On Education and Civil Society

“A liberal education is at the heart of civil society, and at the heart of a liberal education is the act of teaching.”

A. Bartlett Giamatti

“The American Teacher” in Harper’s (1980)

Excerpted from: Howe, Randy, ed. The Quotable Teacher. Guilford, CT: The Lyons Press, 2003.

The Devil’s Dictionary: Pantheism (n)

The doctrine that everything is God, in contradistinction to the doctrine that God is everything.”

Excerpted from: Bierce, Ambrose. David E. Schultz and S.J. Joshi, eds. The Unabridged Devil’s Dictionary. Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 2000. 

Blank Verse

“In prosody, unrhymed verse. In English, the term usually means unrhymed iambic pentameter. In classical prosody, rhyme was not used at all; with the introduction of rhyme in the Middle Ages, blank verse disappeared. It was reintroduced in the 16th century and in England became the standard medium of dramatic poetry and frequently of epic poetry. Shakespeare’s plays, for example, are written mostly in blank verse.”

Excerpted from: Murphy, Bruce, ed. Benet’s Reader’s Encyclopedia, Fourth Edition. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.

Rotten Rejections: In My Father’s Court

[This refers to the 1966 novel by Isaac Bashevis Singer.]

“Too pedestrian.”

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.


Term for one of the ancient parts of speech originally applied to adjectival forms of verbs in Ancient Greek. Described as a “sharing” element (Greek metokhe) because such forms were inflected systematically both for tense and aspect, seen as a defining property of verbs, and for case, seen as a defining property of nouns. The3nce of forms of verbs in other languages whose syntax is at least basically or in part similar: thus, in Engilsh, of forms such as visited in the cities visited or They were visited, or visiting, in the people visiting us, or they are visiting us.

Participles in –ing are traditionally distinguished in English grammar from gerunds, also in –ing, on the grounds that participles have a basic role like those of adjectives, while gerunds have one like a noun.”

Excerpted from: Matthews, P.H. The Oxford Concise Dictionary of Linguistics. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.