Quotes Categories

State Quotes

If nationality is consent, the state is compulsion.

Author: Henri Frederic Amiel (1821-1881)

Profession: Swiss Philosopher, Poet, Critic

In the twentieth century one of the most personal relationships to have developed is that of the person and the state. It's become a fact of life that governments have become very intimate with people, most always to their detriment.

Author: E. L. Doctorow (1931)

Profession: American Novelist

The State has but one face for me: that of the police. To my eyes, all of the State's ministries have this single face, and I cannot imagine the ministry of culture other than as the police of culture, with its prefect and commissioners.

Author: Jean Dubuffet (1901-1985)

Profession: French Sculptor, Painter

While the State becomes inflated and hypertrophied in order to obtain a firm enough grip upon individuals, but without succeeding, the latter, without mutual relationships, tumble over one another like so many liquid molecules, encountering no central energy to retain, fix and organize them.

Author: Emile Durkheim (1858-1917)

Profession: French Sociologist

The State must follow, and not lead, the character and progress of the citizen.

Author: Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

Profession: American Poet, Essayist

The State is the altar of political freedom and, like the religious altar, it is maintained for the purpose of human sacrifice.

Author: Emma Goldman (1869-1940)

Profession: American Anarchist

As high as mind stands above nature, so high does the state stand above physical life. Man must therefore venerate the state as a secular deity. The march of God in the world, that is what the State is.

Author: Georg Hegel (1770-1831)

Profession: German Philosopher

The essence of the modern state is that the universal be bound up with the complete freedom of its particular members and with private well-being, that thus the interests of family and civil society must concentrate themselves on the state. It is only when both these moments subsist in their strength that the state can be regarded as articulated and genuinely organized.

Author: Georg Hegel (1770-1831)

Profession: German Philosopher

The obligation of subjects to the sovereign is understood to last as long, and no longer, than the power lasteth by which he is able to protect them.

Author: Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679)

Profession: British Philosopher

While the State exists there can be no freedom; when there is freedom there will be no State.

Author: Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (1870-1924)

Profession: Russian Revolutionary Leader

In a free society the state does not administer the affairs of men. It administers justice among men who conduct their own affairs.

Author: Walter Lippmann (1889-1974)

Profession: American Journalist

The worth of a State, in the long run, is the worth of the individuals composing it -- a State which dwarfs its men, in order that they may be more docile instruments in its hands even for beneficial purposes -- will find that with small men no great thing can really be accomplished.

Author: John Stuart Mill (1806-1873)

Profession: British Philosopher, Economist

There will never be a really free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly. I please myself with imagining a State at last which can afford to be just to all men, and to treat the individual with respect as a neighbor; which even would not think it inconsistent with its own repose if a few went to live aloof from it, not meddling with it, nor embraced by it, who fulfilled all the duties of neighbors and fellow-men. A State which bore this kind of fruit, and suffered it to drop off as fast as it ripened, would prepare the way for a still more perfect and glorious State, which also I have imagined, but not yet anywhere seen.

Author: Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Profession: American Essayist, Poet, Naturalist

Every new development for the last three centuries has brought men closer to a state of affairs in which absolutely nothing would be recognized in the whole world as possessing a claim to obedience except the authority of the State. The majority of people in Europe obey nothing else.

Author: Simone Weil (1910-1943)

Profession: French Philosopher, Mystic

The State is to make what is useful. The individual is to make what is beautiful.

Author: Oscar Wilde (1856-1900)

Profession: British Author, Wit