Noam Chomsky Quotes

A list created by: Lee Sonogan

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Who is Noam Chomsky? He is a Philosopher, cognitive scientist, historian, political activist and an American linguist. He pretty much created the scientific study of language field in American and is one of the funders of the field of cognitive science. Written over 100 books in many different subjects. Most of his work contributed to psychology. He still is a social critic to this day.

  • “Optimism is a strategy for making a better future. Because unless you believe that the future can be better, you are unlikely to step up and take responsibility for making it so.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “We shouldn’t be looking for heroes, we should be looking for good ideas.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “Social action must be animated by a vision of a future society, and by explicit judgments of value concerning the character of this future society.”
    ― Noam Chomsky, On Anarchism
  • “Choice of sources can shield extreme bias behind a façade of objectivity.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “They have the same point of view. The two parties are two factions of the business party. Most of the population doesn’t even bother voting because it looks meaningless. They’re marginalized and properly distracted. At least that’s the goal.”
    ― Noam Chomsky, Media Control: The Spectacular Achievements of Propaganda
  • “It’s not the generals, it’s the civilians who authorise and organise the worst war crimes.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “If you claim to have a theory that deduces unexpected consequences from nontrivial principles, let’s see it.”
    ― Noam Chomsky, Propaganda and the Public Mind
  • “Discovery is the ability to be puzzled by simple things.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “As soon as questions of will or decision or reason or choice of action arise human science is at a loss.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “Peace is preferable to war. But it’s not an absolute value, and so we always ask, “What kind of peace?”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “Don’t be obsessed with tactics but with purpose. Tactics have a half life.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “ Education must provide the opportunities for self-fulfillment; it can at best provide a rich and challenging environment for the individual to explore, in his own way.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “The very design of neoliberal principles is a direct attack on democracy.”
    ― Noam Chomsky, Hopes and Prospects
  • “Language is a process of free creation; its laws and principles are fixed, but the manner in which the principles of generation are used is free and infinitely varied. Even the interpretation and use of words involves a process of free creation.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “Our ignorance can be divided into problems and mysteries. When we face a problem, we may not know its solution, but we have insight, increasing knowledge, and an inkling of what we are looking for. When we face a mystery, however, we can only stare in wonder and bewilderment, not knowing what an explanation would even look like.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “The key element of social control is the strategy of distraction that is to divert public attention from important issues and changes decided by political and economic elites, through the technique of flood or flooding continuous distractions and insignificant information.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “If it’s wrong when they do it, it’s wrong when we do it.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “Do you train for passing tests or do you train for creative inquiry?”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “It is quite possible–overwhelmingly probable, one might guess–that we will always learn more about human life and personality from novels than from scientific psychology”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “How it is we have so much information, but know so little?”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “If you assume that there is no hope, you guarantee that there will be no hope. If you assume that there is an instinct for freedom, that there are opportunities to change things, then there is a possibility that you can contribute to making a better world.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “It is the responsibility of intellectuals to speak the truth and expose lies.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “All over the place, from the popular culture to the propaganda system, there is constant pressure to make people feel that they are helpless, that the only role they can have is to ratify decisions and to consume.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “I was never aware of any other option but to question everything.”
    ― Noam Chomsky
  • “The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum….”
    ― Noam Chomsky, The Common Good

It has occurred to me for my Famous People Quotes I have made lists based on people who are no longer alive. Noam Chomsky is still alive at the age of 89. His political views were interesting with him believing in a political system that was both Capitalism and Socialism. All political systems should be a balance between conservatism and liberalism ideas and processes. Chomsky has hundreds more quotes to his name.

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