Over My Shoulder

Posted on February 12, 2007. Filed under: over my shoulder, quotation |

“Since that moment, I have known many times what I first experienced then. Until then, my forays into written French had been purely utilitarian, the completion of almost mathematical exercises. When I comprehended a new phrase it was merely a bridge to the next exercise. Never before had I known the sudden quiver of understanding that travels from word to brain to heart, the way a new language can move, coil, swim into life under the eyes, the almost savage leap of comprehension, the instantaneous, joyful release of meaning, the way the words shed their printed bodies in a flash of heat and light.”

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (172)

Props to Clancy, who turned me on to Rad Geek‘s “Over My Shoulder.” Like many avid readers, I often collect quotes — in computer files, on index cards tacked to the fridge, on post-it notes that turn into dog-eared bookmarks — so I love the idea of sharing quotations like this. During the semester I don’t always have a lot of time to read, but at the rate I’m going through The Historian, perhaps I’ll have time to begin a collection of this semester’s quotations…

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    Musings, commonplaces, and occasional crankiness about writing, reading, teaching, and the like…

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