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"First art will imitate life...
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I heard this quote during a lecture and wrote it down word for word. But who said it? The entire quote: "First art will imitate life, then life will imitate art, then life will find its very meaning from the arts."
I would love to use this quote in a paper I'm writing, but I don't know who said it. Help!
 
Posts: 7 | Registered: 08-28-06Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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At first, art imitates life. Then life will imitate art.Then life will find its very existence from the arts.~Fyodor Dostoevsky

* * *
Since we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our minds, our one duty is to furnish it well~Peter Ustinov
 
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That's it! Thanks so much!
 
Posts: 7 | Registered: 08-28-06Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Ouch. In the past I've come to the conclusion this is something that Ravi Zacharias got started. I've been unable to find a source for Dostoevsky ever writing anything like this. I was able to find this:
quote:
Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life . . . Life holds the mirror up to Art, and either reproduces some strange type imagined by a painter or sculptor, or realises in fact what has been dreamed in fiction. . . . For what is Nature? Nature is no great mother who has borne us. She is our creation. It is in our brain that she quickens to life. Things are because we see them, and what we see, and how we see it, depends on the Arts that have influenced us. . . . At present, people see fogs, not because there are fogs, but because poets and painters have taught them the mysterious loveliness of such effects. There may have been fogs for centuries in London. I dare say there were. But no one saw them, and so we do not know anything about them. They did not exist till Art had invented them. Now, it must be admitted, fogs are carried to excess. They have become the mere mannerism of a clique, and the exaggerated realism of their method gives dull people bronchitis. Where the cultured catch an effect, the uncultured catch cold.
~Oscar Wilde, 'The Decay of Lying: An Observation', 1889
http://www.arts.gla.ac.uk/SESLL/EngLit/ugrad/hons/theory/Real&Rep.htm


Here's where Zacharias got it started:
quote:
"Fyodor Dostoevsky predicted that at first art would imitate life, then life would imitate art, and finally, that life would draw the very reason for its existence from art."
~ Ravi Zacharias, Can Man Live Without God (Dallas: Word Publishing, 1994) p. 73


http://www.zactrust.org/products/products.aspx?cat=3

Back for an edit: I'd be interested in anyone being able to find a source for the Dostoevsky attribution.

[This message was edited by thenostromo on 08-29-06 at 11:01 AM.]
 
Posts: 17434 | Location: Wisconsin | Registered: 06-07-00Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Huh. I had no idea! Thanks for the contributions...quite interesting. It's amazing how stuff gets started and then just snowballs...
 
Posts: 7 | Registered: 08-28-06Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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One more thing (sorry!). So if I do use this quote in my paper (which I'm not sure I will), who do I reference? Dostoevsky or Zacharias?
 
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I can only offer my opinion, but knowing what I know, I personally would not attribute this to Dostoevsky because it would only further an apparent mistaken attribution.
In my humble opinion, I would use the Oscar Wilde quote because I think he is the source of this idea.


By the way, I find it interesting to note that an Internet search for the exact expression "life will find its very existence " yeilds very few results.

[This message was edited by thenostromo on 08-29-06 at 12:49 PM.]
 
Posts: 17434 | Location: Wisconsin | Registered: 06-07-00Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yeah, you're probably right. That's what I'll do! Thank you so much!
 
Posts: 7 | Registered: 08-28-06Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The idea, of course, goes back pretty far - if not these specific words. Aristotle said similar things, as did Plotinus:

"If somebody does not esteem the arts because they imitate nature, it should be said first that nature herself imitates. Then it should be borne in mind that the arts do not simply copy the visible things but draw from the principles that constitute the source of nature."
 
Posts: 1 | Registered: 04-26-13Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You can quote Ravi Zacharias and then say he borrowed it from Fyodor Dostoevsky
 
Posts: 2 | Registered: 11-10-15Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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