"Explain the antagonism women showed me, as you will, members of the suffrage and feminist movements. I cannot. All I know is thatwhile men sprang ever ready, ever chivalrous, to put business in my way, sometimes even when competitors, women almost invariably turned me down.... The difficulty ... lay in the quality of the feminine mind. The subtle flattery of an adroit salesman pleased them and their order in consequence went to him. Fear, also, in a dim, unrealized way of those "higher up" crushed their initiative, and I pitied them."
"The years of imprisonment hardened me.... Perhaps if you have been given a moment to hold back and wait for the next blow, your emotions wouldn't be blunted as they have been in my case. When it happens every day of your life, when that pain becomes a way of life, I no longer have the emotion of fear. ... there is no longer anything I can fear. There is nothing the government has not done to me. There isn't any pain I haven't known."
"As for the peasant populations of a great part of the world, they aren't so much anxious as hungry. They aren't anxious about whether they will get a salary raise, or which of the three colleges of their choice they will be admitted to, or whether to buy a Ford or Cadillac, or whether the kind of TV set they want is too expensive. They are hungry, cold and, in many parts of the world, they dread that local warfare, bandits, political coups may endanger their homes, their meager livelihoods and their lives. But surely they are not anxious. For anxiety, as we have come to use it to describe our characteristic state of mind, can be contrasted with the active fear of hunger, loss, violence and death. Anxiety is the appropriate emotion when the immediate personal terror--of a volcano, an arrow, the sorcerer's spell, a stab in the back and other calamities, all directed against one's self--disappears."
"There is nothing strange about fear: no matter in what guise it presents itself it is something with which we are all so familiarthat when a man appears who is without it we are at once enslaved by him."
"Water, earth, air, fire, and the other parts of this structure of mine are no more instruments of your life than instruments of your death. Why do you fear your last day? It contributes no more to your death than each of the others. The last step does not cause the fatigue, but reveals it. All days travel toward death, the last one reaches it."
"I had got away. That was my victory. The real quarrel with Ireland began to burgeon in me then; I thought of how it had warped me,and those around me, and their parents before them, all stooped by a variety of fears--fear of church, fear of gombeenism, fear of phantoms, fear of ridicule, fear of hunger, fear of annihilation, and fear of their own deeply ingrained aggression that can only strike a blow at each other, not having the innate authority to strike at those who are higher. Pity arose too, pity for a land so often denuded, pity for a people reluctant to admit that there is anything wrong. That is why we leave. Because we beg to differ. Because we dread the psychological choke. But leaving is only conditional. The person you are is anathema to the person you would like to be."