90 Powerful Audre Lorde Quotes To Inspire You

Audre Lorde quotes are very inspirational
Share
Tweet

Audre Lorde was a feminist, writer, librarian and civil rights activist.

Lorde was born in the New York City in 1934 and passed away in 1992 on the island of St Croix. She left behind her legacy as a great poet and feminist.  

Lorde started writing at an early age and the first of her published articles came in the magazine ‘Seventeen’, where she was in high school at the time. She has written several books throughout her lifetime, producing well known quotes such as "your silence will not protect you" and "self care is an act of political warfare". Lorde is known for her strength and raising voice against the oppression faced by Black women. She is nothing less than a kind human, to dare to be powerful, who has made many valuable points through her words in her life.

This article has a list of some best quotes by Audre Lorde, on power, feminism and more. We have a list of Audre Lorde feminist quotes, Audre Lorde love poem, Audre Lorde poetry, Audre Lorde poems.

For more such quotes, also check [bell hooks quotes] and Angela Davis quotes.

Best Audre Lorde Quotes

Some of the best quotes by Audre Lorde are listed below, covering self indulgence, power, and self preservation.

1. “I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood.”

-Audre Lorde.

2. “Without community, there is no liberation.”

-Audre Lorde.

3. “The difference between poetry and rhetoric is being ready to kill yourself instead of your children.”

-Audre Lorde.

4. “Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.”

-Audre Lorde.

5. “Unacknowledged class differences rob women of each others’ energy and creative insight.”

-Audre Lorde.

6. “If they cannot love and resist at the same time, they probably will not survive.”

-Audre Lorde.

7. “Oppression is as American as apple pie.”

-Audre Lorde.

8. “Oppressed peoples are always being asked to stretch a little more, to bridge the gap between blindness and humanity.”

-Audre Lorde.

9. "But, on the other hand, I get bored with racism too and recognize that there are still many things to be said about a Black person and a White person loving each other in a racist society."

-Audre Lorde.

10. “I learned so much from listening to people. And all I knew was, the only thing I had was honesty and openness.”

-Audre Lorde.

11. “It is not the destiny of Black America to repeat white America's mistakes. But we will, if we mistake the trappings of success in a sick society for the signs of a meaningful life.”

-Audre Lorde.

12. “For to survive in the mount of this dragon we call America, we have had to learn this first and most vital lesson – that we were never meant to survive. Not as human beings.”

-Audre Lorde.

Inspirational Audre Lorde Quotes

Some inspirational words said by Audre Lorde are listed below.

13. “Life is very short and what we have to do must be done in the now.”

-Audre Lorde.

14. “Your silence will not protect you.”

-Audre Lorde.

15. “When I dare to be powerful to use my strength in the service of my vision then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”

-Audre Lorde.

16. “We must wake up knowing we have work to do and go to bed knowing we've done it.”

-Audre Lorde.

17. “Nothing I accept about myself can be used against me to diminish me.”

-Audre Lorde.

18. “I urge each one of us here to reach down into that deep place of knowledge inside herself and touch that terror and loathing of any difference that lives here. See whose face it wears.”

-Audre Lorde.

19. “…And at last you’ll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth. And that is not speaking.”

-Audre Lorde.

20. “what you hear in my voice is fury, not suffering. Anger, not moral authority”

-Audre Lorde.

21. “You cannot, you cannot use someone else’s fire. You can only use your own. And in order to do that, you must first be willing to believe that you have it.”

-Audre Lorde.

22. "We do not need to become each other in order to work together."

-Audre Lorde.

23. “If you can’t change reality, change your perceptions of it.”

-Audre Lorde.

24. “Once you start to speak, people will yell at you. They will interrupt you, put you down and suggest it’s personal. And the world won’t end.”

-Audre Lorde.

25. “Next time, ask: What’s the worst that will happen? Then push yourself a little further than you dare.”

-Audre Lorde.

‘Sister Outsider’ Quotes

Audre Lorde quotes have inspired women worldwide.

Some quotes from the famous book ‘Sister Outsider’ are listed below.

26. “How much of this truth can I bear to see and still live unblinded? How much of this pain can I use?”

-Audre Lorde.

27. “Because the machine will try to grind you into dust anyway, whether or not we speak.”

-Audre Lorde.

28. “Survival is the greatest gift of love”

-Audre Lorde.

29. “I cannot shut you out the way I shut the others out, so maybe I can destroy you. Must destroy you?”

-Audre Lorde.

30. “What better way is there to police the streets of a minority community than to turn one generation against the other?”

-Audre Lorde.

31. “Tenses are a way of ordering the chaos around time.”

-Audre Lorde.

32. “We are all more blind to what we have than to what we have not.”

-Audre Lorde.

33. “How are you practicing what you preach—whatever you preach, and who is exactly listening?”

-Audre Lorde.

34. “...each one of us is here because somebody before us did something to make it possible.”

-Audre Lorde.

35. “For Black women as well as Black men, it is axiomatic that if we do not define ourselves for ourselves, we will be defined by others — for their use and to our detriment.”

-Audre Lorde.

36. “No woman is responsible for altering the psyche of her oppressor, even when that psyche is embodied in another woman.”

-Audre Lorde.

37. “As a Black lesbian mother in an interracial marriage, there was usually some part of me guaranteed to offend everybody's comfortable prejudices of who I should be.”

-Audre Lorde.

38. “We can learn to work and speak when we are afraid in the same way we have learned to work and speak when we are tired.”

-Audre Lorde.

Feminism Quotes

Audre Lorde quotes are loud and powerful.

Listed below are some more quotes about feminism by Lorde. You can share a quote with your female friends to empower them, or boys to inspire them.

39. “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.”  

-Audre Lorde.

40. “I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own.”  

-Audre Lorde.

41. “Revolution is not a one time event.”

-Audre Lorde.

42. “I write for those women who do not speak, for those who do not have a voice because they were so terrified, because we are taught to respect fear more than ourselves. We've been taught that silence would save us, but it won't.”

-Audre Lorde.

43. “Black women are programmed to define ourselves within this male attention and to compete with each other for it rather than to recognize and move upon our common interests.”

-Audre Lorde.

44. “We have to consciously study how to be tender with each other until it becomes a habit because what was native has been stolen from us, the love of Black women for each other.”

-Audre Lorde.

45. "When we create out of our experiences, as feminists of color, women of color, we have to develop those structures that will present and circulate our culture."

-Audre Lorde.

46. “I know that my people cannot possibly profit from the oppression of any other group which seeks the right to peaceful existence.”

-Audre Lorde.

47. “Every woman I have ever loved has left her print upon me, where I loved some invaluable piece of myself apart from me — so different that I had to stretch and grow in order to recognize her. And in that growing, we came to separation, that place where work begins.”

-Audre Lorde.

48. “Some women wait for themselves around the next corner and call the empty spot peace, but the opposite of living is only not living, and the stars do not care.”

-Audre Lorde.

49. “The failure of academic feminists to recognize difference as a crucial strength is a failure to reach beyond the first patriarchal lesson. In our world, divide and conquer must become define and empower.”

-Audre Lorde.

50. “Any discussion among women about racism must include the recognition and use of anger. This discussion must be direct and creative because it is crucial.”

-Audre Lorde.

Motivational Audre Lorde Quotes

Some motivational quotes said by Lorde are listed below.

51. “If I didn’t define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive.”  

-Audre Lorde.

52. “Caring for myself is not self indulgence it is self preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.”

-Audre Lorde.

53. “I am deliberate and afraid of nothing.”

-Audre Lorde.

54. “If our history has taught us anything, it is that action for change directed against the external conditions of our oppressions is not enough.”

-Audre Lorde.

55. “Change is the immediate responsibility of each of us, wherever and however we are standing, in whatever arena we choose.”

-Audre Lorde.

56. “Even the smallest victory is never to be taken for granted. Each victory must be applauded.”

-Audre Lorde.

57. “Unless one lives and loves in the trenches, it is difficult to remember that the war against dehumanization is ceaseless.”

-Audre Lorde.

58. “Tomorrow belongs to those of us who conceive of it as belonging to everyone; who lend the best of ourselves to it, and with joy.”

-Audre Lorde.

59. “Only by learning to live in harmony with your contradictions can you keep it all afloat.”

-Audre Lorde.

60. “Well, I do not want to be tolerated, nor misnamed. I want to be recognized.”

-Audre Lorde.

61. “In our work and in our living, we must recognize that difference is a reason for celebration and growth, rather than a reason for destruction.”

-Audre Lorde.

62. “The learning process is something you can incite, literally incite, like a riot.”

-Audre Lorde.

Famous Audre Lorde Quotes

Listed below are some famous quotes by Lorde.

63. “There is no thing as a single-issue struggle because we do not live single-issue lives.”

-Audre Lorde.

64. “I have a duty to speak the truth as I see it and share not just my triumphs, not just the things that felt good but the pain the intense often unmitigated pain.”

-Audre Lorde.

65. “And when we speak we are afraid our words will not be heard nor welcomed. But when we are silent we are still afraid. So it is better to speak remembering we were never meant to survive”

-Audre Lorde, ‘The Black Unicorn: Poems’.

66. “Attend me, hold me in your muscular flowering arms, protect me from throwing any part of myself away.”

-Audre Lorde.

67. “The quality of light by which we scrutinize our lives has direct bearing upon the product which we live, and upon the changes which we hope to bring about through those lives.”

-Audre Lorde.

68. "Poetry is not a luxury. It is a vital necessity of our existence."

-Audre Lorde.

69. "We cannot continue to evade each other on the deepest levels because we fear each other's angers, nor continue to believe that respect means never looking directly nor with openness into another Black woman's eyes."

-Audre Lorde.

70. “Oppressors always expect the oppressed to extend to them the understanding so lacking in themselves.”

-Audre Lorde.

71. “...it is not difference which immobilizes us, but silence.”

-Audre Lorde.

72. "We are African women and we know, in our blood's telling, the tenderness with which our foremothers held each other."

-Audre Lorde.

73. “I had made contact with other women while we examined the words to fit a world in which we all believed, bridging our differences.”

-Audre Lorde.

74. “For wherever our oppression manifests itself in this country, black people are potential victims.”

-Audre Lorde.

75. “It is important to share how I know survival is survival and not just a walk through the rain.”

-Audre Lorde.

76. “You are the one that you are looking for.”

-Audre Lorde.

Interesting Audre Lorde Quotes

Here are some interesting quotes by Audre Lorde.

77. “The master's tools will never dismantle the master's house”

-Audre Lorde.

78. “It is so much easier to remain emotionally aloof or to indulge in the quick emotional...that passes as sentiment so often.”

-Audre Lorde.

79. “I have to believe that caring for myself is not self indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival.”

-Audre Lorde.

80. “Anger is an appropriate reaction to racist attitudes, as is fury when the actions arising from those attitudes do not change.”

-Audre Lorde.

81. “Sometimes we are blessed with being able to choose the time, and the arena, and the manner of our revolution, but more usually we must do battle where we are standing.”

-Audre Lorde.

82. “I knew what it was like to be haunted by the ghost of a self one wished to be, but only half-sensed.”

-Audre Lorde.

83. “We must be the change we wish to see in the world.”

-Audre Lorde.

84. "I am who I am, doing what I came to do, acting upon you like a drug or chisel or remind you of your me-ness as I discover you in myself."

-Audre Lorde.

85. “I find I am constantly being encouraged to pluck out some one aspect of myself and present this as the meaningful whole, eclipsing or denying the other parts of self.”

–Audre Lorde.

86. “I realize that if I wait until I am no longer afraid to act, write, speak, be, I’ll be sending messages on a Ouija board, cryptic complaints from the other side.”

-Audre Lorde.

Popular Audre Lorde Quotes

Some popular quotes by Audre Lorde are listed below.

87. “Pain is important how we evade it, how we succumb to it, how we deal with it, how we transcend it.”

-Audre Lorde.

88. “Each time you love, love as deeply as if it were forever.”

-Audre Lorde.

89. “I am my best work - a series of road maps, reports, recipes, doodles, and prayers from the front lines.”

-Audre Lorde.

90. “The absence of any consideration of lesbian consciousness or the consciousness of third world women leaves a serious gap within this conference....”

-Audre Lorde.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Audre Lorde quotes, then why not take a look at Zora Neale Hurston quotes or [Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie quotes].

Disclaimer

Disclaimer

At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents.

We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it’s important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.

Kidadl provides inspiration to entertain and educate your children. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.

Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.

Sponsorship & Advertising Policy

Kidadl is independent and to make our service free to you the reader we are supported by advertising.

We hope you love our recommendations for products and services! What we suggest is selected independently by the Kidadl team. If you purchase using the buy now button we may earn a small commission. This does not influence our choices. Please note: prices are correct and items are available at the time the article was published.

Kidadl has a number of affiliate partners that we work with including Amazon. Please note that Kidadl is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.

We also link to other websites, but are not responsible for their content.

Read our Sponsorship & Advertising Policy
Get The Kidadl Newsletter

1,000 of inspirational ideas direct to your inbox for things to do with your kids.

Thank you! Your newsletter will be with you soon.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
No items found.