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40+ Best Ever John Steinbeck Quotes From The Famous American Author And Nobel Prize Winner

John Steinbeck book quotes are full of wisdom.

John Ernst Steinbeck Jr. was an author who won Nobel Prize for literature.

The author had a happy childhood but later he lived through the time of great depression. He took inspiration for his writings from his life, like about the great depression or from his life as a farm laborer.

The author had a distinct style of writing where reality and imagination were combined in a very beautiful way. For example, his quote, "All great and precious things are lonely" is a really meaningful piece of writing in which proves his extraordinary writing skill. Read up on the John Steinbeck quotes below to be mesmerized. These quotes are truly insightful and sharing these quotes can help you connect deeper with community as well.

If you liked our John Steinbeck quotes go check out ['Grapes Of Wrath'] and ['Of Mice And Men'] quotes.

John Steinbeck Famous Quotes

Here's a few of the best John Steinbeck quotes, like 'The Pearl' by John Steinbeck quotes and more from his writings for you.

1. "There ain't no sin and there ain't no virtue. There's just stuff people do."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

2. "I believe that there is one story in the world, and only one, that has frightened and inspired us, so that we live in a Pearl White serial of continuing thought and wonder."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

3. "Humans are never satisfied, that you give them one thing and they want something more. And this is said in disparagement, whereas it is one of the greatest talents the species has and one that has made it superior to animals that are satisfied with what they have."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Pearl'.

4. "A sad soul can kill you quicker, far quicker, than a germ."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

5. "Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen."

- John Steinbeck in an interview with Robert van Gelder.

6. "And this I believe: that the free, exploring mind of the individual human is the most valuable thing in the world."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

7. "The writer must believe that what he is doing is the most important thing in the world. And he must hold onto this illusion, even though he knows it's not true."

- John Steinbeck.

John Steinbeck Quotes On Great Depression

The author lived through the great depression and wrote in details about in his short stories. Below are some 'Grapes Of Wrath' quotes and more that are about the great depression.

8. "The migrant people, scuttling for work, scrabbling to live, looked always for pleasure, dug for pleasure, manufactured pleasure, and they were hungry for amusement."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

9. 'When a majority of the people are hungry and cold they will take by force what they need. And the little screaming fact that sounds through all history: repression works only to strengthen and knit the repressed."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

10. "They's a time of change, an' when that comes, dyin' is a piece of all dyin', and bearin' is a piece of all bearin', an' bearin' an' dyin' is two pieces of the same thing. An' then things ain't so lonely anymore. An' then a hurt don't hurt so bad."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

11. "Fear the time when the strikes stop while the great owners live - for every little beaten strike is proof that the step is being taken."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

12. "It ain't that big. The whole United States ain't that big. It ain't that big. It ain't big enough. There ain't room enough for you an' me, for your kind an' my kind … For hunger and fat."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

13. "They breathe profits; they eat the interest on money. If they don't get it, they die the way you die without air, without side-meat."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

14. "The bank is something more than men, I tell you. It's the monster. Men made it, but they can't control it."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

15. "How can you frighten a man whose hunger is not only in his own cramped stomach but in the wretched bellies of his children? You can't scare him - he has known a fear beyond every other."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

16. "First the strangers came with argument and authority and gunpowder to back up both. And in the four hundred years Kino's people had learned only one defense - a slight slitting of the eyes and a slight tightening of the lips and a retirement. Nothing could break down this wall."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Pearl'.

17. "And in the eyes of the people there is a failure; and in the eyes of the hungry there is a growing wrath. In the souls of the people the grapes of wrath are filling and growing heavy, growing heavy for the vintage."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

John Steinbeck Quotes About Life

John Steinbeck quotes on life are inspirational.

The author has written deep meaningful words on life. These John Steinbeck 'East of Eden' quotes and more John Steinbeck quotes show that.

18. "I have never smuggled anything in my life. Why, then, do I feel an uneasy sense of guilt on approaching a customs barrier?"

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

19. "Somewhere in the world there is a defeat for everyone. Some are destroyed by defeat, and some made small and mean by victory. Greatness lives in one who triumphs equally over defeat and victory."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Acts Of King Arthur And His Noble Knights'.

20. "Up ahead they's a thousan' lives we might live, but when it comes it'll on'y be one."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

21. "How can we live without our lives? How will we know it's us without our past?"

- John Steinbeck, 'The Grapes Of Wrath'.

22. "It seems to me that if you or I must choose between two courses of thought or action, we should remember our dying and try so to live that our death brings no pleasure to the world."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

23. "I knew I would wear scars but would they be worse than the scars of failure I was wearing? To be alive at all is to have scars."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Winter Of Our Discontent'.

24. "It’s a hard thing to leave any deeply routine life, even if you hate it."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

25. "Humans are caught - in their lives, in their thoughts, in their hungers and ambitions, in their avarice and cruelty, and in their kindness and generosity too - in a net of good and evil."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

26. "A man, after he has brushed off the dust and chips of his life, will have left only the hard, clean questions: Was it good or was it evil? Have I done well - or ill?"

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

27. "I wonder how many people I've looked at all my life and never seen."

- John Steinbeck, 'The Winter Of Our Discontent'.

John Steinbeck Travel Quotes

The author has written beautiful words on travel. These John Steinbeck 'Travels With Charley' quotes are only the best few of them.

28. "Once a journey is designed, equipped, and put in process, a new factor enters and takes over. A trip, a safari, an exploration, is an entity, different from all other journeys. It has personality, temperament, individuality, uniqueness."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

29. "I saw in their eyes something I was to see over and over in every part of the nation- a burning desire to go, to move, to get under way, anyplace, away from any Here."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

30. "I know people who are so immersed in road maps that they never see the countryside they pass through, and others who, having traced a route, are held to it as though held by flanged wheels to rails."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

31. "Charley is a mind-reading dog. There have been many trips in his lifetime … He knows we are going long before the suitcase has come out, and he paces and worries and whines and goes into a state of mild hysteria."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

32. "There are as many worlds as there are kinds of days, and as an opal changes its colors and its fire to match the nature of a day, so do I."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

33. "When I was very young and the urge to be someplace else was on me, I was assured by mature people that maturity would cure this itch … Nothing has worked. I fear the disease is incurable."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

34. "When we get these thruways across the whole country, as we will and must, it will be possible to drive from New York to California without seeing a single thing."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

35. "A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policies and coercion are fruitless. We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

36. "A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

37. "I was born lost and take no pleasure in being found."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

John Steinbeck Love Quotes

John Steinbeck quotes on travel are beautiful.

The author had a wise outlook when it came to love. These John Steinbeck 'Cannery Row' quotes and 'Of Mice And Men' quotes on love certainly prove so.

38. "I have a new love for that glittering instrument, the human soul. It is a lovely and unique thing in the universe. It is always attacked and never destroyed - because 'Thou mayest."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

39. "A man so painfully in love is capable of self-torture beyond belief."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

40. "It sometimes happens that what you feel is not returned for one reason or another - but that does not make your feeling less valuable and good."

- John Steinbeck, 'Steinbeck: A Life In Letters'.

41. "If you are in love - that’s a good thing - that’s about the best thing that can happen to anyone. Don't let anyone make it small or light to you."

- John Steinbeck, 'Steinbeck: A Life In Letters'.

42. "Girls have a way of knowing or feeling what you feel, but they usually like to hear it also."

- John Steinbeck, 'Steinbeck: A Life In Letters'.

43. "A woman holds dreadful power over a man who is in love with her but she should realize that the quality and force of his love is the index of his potential contempt and hatred."

- John Steinbeck, 'Steinbeck: A Life In Letters'.

44. "The new American finds his challenge and his love in the traffic-choked streets, skies nested in smog, choking with the acids of industry, the screech of rubber and houses leashed in against one another while the town lets wither a time and die."

- John Steinbeck, 'Travels With Charley: In Search Of America'.

45. "I believe that love cannot be bought except with love."

- John Steinbeck.

46. "I believe a strong woman may be stronger than a man, particularly if she happens to have love in her heart. I guess a loving woman is indestructible."

- John Steinbeck, 'East Of Eden'.

47. "Try to understand men. If you understand each other you will be kind to each other. Knowing a man well never leads to hate and almost always leads to love."

- John Steinbeck, 'Of Mice And Men'.

48. "Doc still loved true things but he knew it was not a general love and it could be a very dangerous mistress."

- John Steinbeck, 'Cannery Row'.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for John Steinbeck quotes then why not take a look at ['East Of Eden' quotes], or ['12 Angry Men' quotes].

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Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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