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Thomas Kuhn Quotes

Let these quotes by Thomas Kuhn help you to have a positive attitude toward life, and to think positively.

The historian of science may be tempted to exclaim
that when paradigms change,
the world itself changes with them.
- Thomas Kuhn

Normal science does not aim at novelties of fact or theory and,
when successful, finds none.
- Thomas Kuhn

Rather than being an interpreter, the scientist who
embraces a new paradigm is like the man wearing inverting lenses.
- Thomas Kuhn

Crisis alone is not enough.
There must also be a basis, though it need be neither
rational nor ultimately correct,
for faith in the particular candidate chosen.
- Thomas Kuhn

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It is, I think, particularly in periods of acknowledged
crisis that scientists have turned to philosophical
analysis as a device for unlocking the riddles of their field.
Scientists have not generally needed or wanted to be philosophers.
- Thomas Kuhn

The crises of our time, it becomes increasingly clear,
are the necessary impetus for the revolution now under way.
And once we understand nature's transformative powers,
we see that it is our powerful ally,
not a force to feared our subdued.
- Thomas Kuhn

Under normal conditions the research scientist is not
an innovator but a solver of puzzles,
and the puzzles upon which he concentrates are just
those which he believes can be both stated and solved
within the existing scientific tradition.
- Thomas Kuhn

 

Historian: an unsuccessful novelist.
- H. L. Mencken

The search for the truth for truth's sake is the mark of the historian.
- B. H. Liddell Hart

The same contingencies of time and space that force
a statesman or soldier to make decisions,
impel the historian, though with less urgency,
to make up his mind.
- Samuel E. Morison

The historian is terribly responsible to what he can
discern are the facts of the case,
but he's nothing if he doesn't make out a case.
- Howard Nemerov

No man can be a politician, except he be first a historian or a traveller;
for except he can see what must be,
or what may be, he is no politician.
- James Harrington

Every historian discloses a new horizon.
- George Sand

The novelist must look on humanity without partiality or prejudice.
His sympathy, like that of the historian,
must be unbounded, and untainted by sect or party.
- Goldwin Smith

The first qualification for a historian is to have no ability to invent.
- Stendhal

I'm a historian, and that freaks me out.
- Mike Tyson

It was necessary, as a black historian,
to have a personal agenda.
- John Hope Franklin

You need, as a historian, essential triangulation from
your subject and the only way you get that triangulation is through time.
- Ken Burns

I am not trying to be a historian and a dramatist;
I'm a dramatist,
a dramatic historian, or one who does a dramatic interpretation of history.
- Oliver Stone

The historian is, by definition, absolutely incapable
of observing the facts which he examines.
- Marc Bloch

Every historian with professional standards speaks
or writes what he believes to be true.
- Samuel E. Morison

I'm not an historian but I can get interested -
obsessively interested -
with any aspect of the past,
whether it's palaeontology or archaeology or the very recent past.
- Penelope Lively

I didn't realize the president was such an historian.
- Mark Shields

A good historian is timeless; although he is a patriot,
he will never flatter his country in any respect.
- Francois Fenelon

Oh no, I'm not a historian or anything like that.
- Lee Hazlewood

I don't really have a historical overview of my work at all.
I'm not an art historian.
I don't see that there's this period and that period.
- Howard Hodgkin

If you think about it, the historian's task is like that of the detective.
- David Herbert Donald

Ignorance is the first requisite of the historian -
ignorance,
which simplifies and clarifies, which selects and omits,
with a placid perfection unattainable by the highest art.
- Lytton Strachey

Very few things happen at the right time,
and the rest do not happen at all.
The conscientious historian will correct these defects.
- Herodotus

Every historian has informally an anthropology,
without ever using the word.
- Peter Gay

The first duty of an historian is to be on guard against his own sympathies.
- James Anthony Froude

Historian - a broad-gauge gossip.
- Ambrose Bierce

What is a historian, anyway? It is someone who uses
facts to record the development of humanity.
- Lion Feuchtwanger

I'm a historian in my own mind.
- Quentin Tarantino

The good historian is like the giant of the fairy tale.
He knows that wherever he catches the scent of human flesh,
there his quarry lies.
- Marc Bloch

Reason is the historian, but passions are the actors.
- Antoine Rivarol

I ain't no historian but I happen to savvy this incident.
- Charles M. Russell

The historian is a prophet looking backward.
- Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel

The writer's language is to some degree the product of his own action;
he is both the historian and the agent of his own language.
- Paul de Man

But I'm a historian.
I wasn't interested in just being a producer,
I was interested in doing research and presenting that
research to a general public.
- Bernice Johnson Reagon

I'm no politician.
I'm an historian who has learned through a lifetime
of studying that nothing in the world beats universal education.
- Stephen Ambrose

Too rigid specialization is almost as bad for a historian's mind,
and for his ultimate reputation, as too early an indulgence
in broad generalization and synthesis.
- Samuel E. Morison

The man who first gave history a recognized place in
science was an ancient historian.
- James H. Breasted

To a historian libraries are food, shelter,
and even muse.
- Barbara Tuchman

The historian's job is to aggrandize,
promoting accident to inevitability and innocuous circumstance to portent.
- Peter Conrad

You're not a historian, but most historians will tell
you that they make very discrete judgment as to what
facts to omit in order to make their book into some shape,
some length that can be managed.
- Oliver Stone

In any case, his judgment and set of values,
acting alone or through his assistants,
determine not only what is gold and what is dross but
the design of the history which he creates out of the metal.
The historian decides what is significant,
and what is not.
- Samuel E. Morison

Yet enthusiasm is no excuse for the historian going off balance.
He should remind the reader that outcomes were neither
inevitable nor foreordained,
but subject to a thousand changes and chances.
- Samuel E. Morison

Both the historian and the novelist view history as
the struggle of a tiny minority,
able and determined to make judgments,
which is up against a vast and densely packed majority of the blind,
who are led by their instincts and unable to think for themselves.
- Lion Feuchtwanger

The historian must have some conception of how men
who are not historians behave.
Otherwise he will move in a world of the dead.
He can only gain that conception through personal experience,
and he can only use his personal experiences when he is a genius.
- E. M. Forster

I can see that you are a true historian because you
really always ought to ask that question about anybody
at a different place or a different time:
What's the same and what's different?
- Donald Kagan

Now, to describe the process of the Wrapped Reichstag,
which went from 1971 to '95, there is an entire book about that,
because each one of our projects has its own book.
The book is not an art book, meaning it's not written by an art historian.
- Christo

But in answer to your question about the conspiracy angle,
I think that any historian worth his salt,
and this is where I fault Stephen Ambrose and a lot
of these guys who attack me -
not all of life is a result of conspiracy by any means!
Accident occurs alongside conspiracy.
- Oliver Stone

Maya Angelou, the famous African American poet,
historian, and civil rights activist who is hailed
be many as one of the great voices of contemporary literature,
believes a struggle only makes a person stronger.
- Michael N. Castle

It is useful to the historian, among others,
to be able to see the commonest forms of different phenomena,
whether phonetic, morphological or other,
and how language lives, carries on and changes over time.
- Ferdinand de Saussure

I'm not an historian and I'm not wanting to write about
how I perceive the social change over the century as a historian,
but as somebody who's walked through it and whose life
has been dictated by it too,
as all our lives are.
- Penelope Lively

So with truth - there is a certain moment when one can say,
this is the truth and here I put a dot,
a stop, and I go to another thing.
A judge has to put an end to a deliberation.
But for a historian, there's never an end to the past.
It can go on and on and on.
- A. B. Yehoshua

The greatest of all the Sioux in my time,
or in any time for that matter, was that wonderful old fighting man,
Sitting Bull, whose life will some day be written by
a historian who can really give him his due.
- Buffalo Bill

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.
Talent will not;
nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not;
unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not;
the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.
- Calvin Coolidge

The successful revolutionary is a statesman,
the unsuccessful one a criminal.
- Erich Fromm

Behind every successful man there's a lot of unsuccessful years.
- Bob Brown

I am a registered Democrat and two-time unsuccessful candidate for office.
- Jack L. Chalker

I hate last-minute shopping, it's always unsuccessful.
- Cat Deeley

To judge between good or bad, between successful and
unsuccessful would take the eye of a God.
- Anton Chekhov

True success is overcoming the fear of being unsuccessful.
- Paul Sweeney

The fact that I'm going to be unsuccessful at times
is pretty well-balanced by the fact that I'm going
to be successful at others.
- Rod Taylor

Although raised on the farm - my grandfather was an
unsuccessful fundamentalist preacher turned farmer -
my father and his brother both became professors.
- Philip Warren Anderson

If they are unsuccessful in married life,
who suffers more the bitter consequences of poverty
than the wife? But if successful,
she has not a dollar to call her own.
- Ernestine Rose

Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others.
Unsuccessful people are always asking,
"What's in it for me?"
- Brian Tracy

Being unemployed is not good for an actor.
No, it isn't, no matter how unsuccessful you are.
Because you always remember getting fired from all the restaurants.
You remember that stuff very, very strongly.
- Philip Seymour Hoffman

The world must be filled with unsuccessful musical careers like mine,
and it's probably a good thing.
We don't need a lot of bad musicians filling the air with unnecessary sounds.
Some of the professionals are bad enough.
- Andy Rooney


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