William Golding

Literary Birthday – 19 September – William Golding

William Golding was born 19 September 1911, and died 19 June 1993.


  1. The writer probably knows what he meant when he wrote a book, but he should immediately forget what he meant when he’s written it.
  2. Novelists do not write as birds sing, by the push of nature. It is part of the job that there should be much routine and some daily stuff on the level of carpentry.
  3. Childhood is a disease — a sickness that you grow out of.
  4. Language fits over experience like a straight-jacket.
  5. We need more humanity, more care, more love. There are those who expect a political system to produce that; and others who expect the love to produce the system. My own faith is that the truth of the future lies between the two and we shall behave humanly and a bit humanely, stumbling along, haphazardly generous and gallant, foolishly and meanly wise until the rape of our planet is seen to be the preposterous folly that it is.
  6. My yesterdays walk with me. They keep step, they are grey faces that peer over my shoulder.
  7. Sleep is when all the unsorted stuff comes flying out as from a dustbin upset in a high wind.
  8. Basically I’m an optimist. Intellectually I can see man’s balance is about fifty-fifty, and his chances of blowing himself up are about one to one. I can’t see this any way but intellectually. I’m just emotionally unable to believe that he will do this. This means that I am by nature an optimist and by intellectual conviction a pessimist, I suppose.
  9. Man produces evil, as a bee produces honey.
  10. I am astonished at the ease with which uninformed persons come to a settled, a passionate opinion when they have no grounds for judgement.

William Golding was an English novelist, poet, and playwright. The Nobel Prize laureate is best known for his novel Lord of the Flies. He was also awarded the Booker Prize for literature in 1980 for his novel Rites of Passage, the first book of the trilogy To the Ends of the Earth.

Image Source


Unknown authorUnknown author, CC BY-SA 3.0 NL <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/nl/deed.en>, via Wikimedia Commons

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 19th September 2013