George Steiner - Genius Quotes
4 Sourced Quotes
The ordinary man casts a shadow. In a way we do not quite understand, the man of genius casts light. Instinctively, we flinch from this light. We assure ourselves that genius must pay a terrible price. Often history bears us out: the creator, the supreme artist, the master of politics carries the scars of his greatness.
Verse no longer stands at the centre of communicative discourse. It is no longer, as it was from Homer to Milton, the natural repository of knowledge and traditional sentiment. It no longer gives to society its main record of past grandeur or its natural setting for prophecy, as it did in Virgil and Dante. Verse has grown private. It is a special language which the individual poet insinuates, by force of personal genius, into the awareness of his contemporaries, persuading to learn and perhaps hand on his own uses of words. Poetry has become essentially lyric — that is to say, it is the poetry of private vision rather than of public or of national occasion.