As this blog is entitled ‘Brief thoughts and quotes’, how could I not quote Anne Carson’s thoughts about quotes in ‘Foam (Essay with Rhapsody): On the Sublime in Longinus and Antonioni’ in Decreation: Poetry, Essays, Opera?
A quote (cognate with quota) is a cut, a section, a slice of someone else’s orange. You suck the slice, toss the rind, skate away. Part of what you enjoy in a documentary technique is the sense of banditry. To loot someone else’s life or sentences and make off with a point of view, which is called ‘objective’ because you can make anything into an object by treating it this way, is exciting and dangerous.