Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Zadie Smith Quote on Role of Books/Literature in Human Empathy ( No Answer,   1 Comment )
Subject: Zadie Smith Quote on Role of Books/Literature in Human Empathy
Category: Arts and Entertainment > Books and Literature
Asked by: elizabethames-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 30 Oct 2006 21:26 PST
Expires: 29 Nov 2006 21:26 PST
Question ID: 778684
I am searching for a particular quote about writing/the nature of
fiction that I believe comes from Zadie Smith. I encountered it
recently, but am not sure whether it was in print or on line. In my
own searches, I feel I have been unable to find this quote as the
terms I am using are so broad and yield so many results. She said
something to the effect of: the great thing about
literature/fiction/stories/books is that they convince us that other
people are actually real. The quote illustrated the way that stories
help us see that we're not the only "real" people in the world.
Obviously, she may have used other words (other people are actually as
human as we are) but that is the gist of it.  I have a feeling that
the quote came from some sort of speech or address she recently gave,
but that could be mistaken.  I feel that I'm hitting a brick wall
here, and was hoping to use this quote for a piece of writing I'm
turning in tomorrow morning. If any one can find this quote quickly I
would be endlessly grateful.

Thanks for your help!

Clarification of Question by elizabethames-ga on 30 Oct 2006 21:33 PST
I just wanted to clarify that the following quote, while certainly
applicable, is not the one I am searching for: " My flag is rather
weak in comparison. It says: "When we read with fine attention, we
find ourselves caring about people who are various, muddled, uncertain
and not quite like us (and this is good)." Zadie Smith
There is no answer at this time.

Subject: Re: Zadie Smith Quote on Role of Books/Literature in Human Empathy
From: rainbow-ga on 30 Oct 2006 23:16 PST
Here are two quotes I was able to find. One is by Zadie Smith and one
is about Zadie Smith:

"That is the biggest treat of fiction that nobody ever really admits
to -- that every character is just a little bit of you." ~ Zadie Smith

About Zadie Smith:

"It truly shows incredible gift when someone is capable of inventing
and describing convincing characters, people you almost believe are
real. Zadie Smith portrays them good and bad but not in that forced

I hope that helps.


Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy