To Quote, or Not to Quote–IS There a Question?

64 Arts

We move on from conundrums and onto quotations–lots of talkie bits in this section of the Arts–more specifically:

29 The art of completing a quotation (pratimala)

This reminds me of an early episode of Charmed where, to cover a generational gap, one character says to another something that leads into a back-and-forth recitation of a bit of Shakespeare (after some search I found it to be from As You Like It, Act III, Scene 2).

The speech in question starts at 1:39. (Direct link for the feedreaders) I watch too much television.

The point is, two strangers found a common ground through a shared knowledge and appreciation of literature.

These days, unless you spend a lot of time around academia, quoting Shakespeare or other arcane information might not get you very far. But fear not! There are plenty of contemporary sources of quotes in movies, songs, books and, yes, television shows.

And sometimes it doesn’t even take a full quote. I was at a party at a sci-fi convention and mentioned Otter Pops (the mystery drink of the evening was reminding me of it). All of a sudden this big, tall dude that I think they called Ogre bellowed “who said Otter Pops? Otter Pops were awesome” or something like that and high-fived me.

Just yesterday I saw two articles that take the idea of of quotations from our ancient lists of arts into the 21st century, to a blogger-specific level.

Why do quotes work as touchstones? Because we recognize them. We’re not trying to pass if off as our own, just a shared affinity for the material. It comes down to respect.

When we respect the source material, we’re proud to say where it came from. Why should our blogs and websites be any different?

  1. If you want to share something, share it in a way people will know how to find more of it.
  2. If you want to use something of someone else’s, ask permission.
  3. If you don’t want to be bothered, create something yourself.

I think it’s pretty simple, yes?

Do you have a favorite quote? Leave it (and where it’s from!) in the comments.

2 thoughts on “To Quote, or Not to Quote–IS There a Question?

  1. I saw the coolest quote about living a whimsical life on a blog…“You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.”
    ― Mary Oliver, Wild Geese

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