Noam Chomsky’s 31 Best Quotes

A multidisciplinary thinker, engaged and critical of the system. This is how Noam Chomsky can be defined (United States, 1928), A seasoned psycholinguist and political activist who is one of the most applauded figures in contemporary thought.

  • Here you can read the biography of Noam Chomsky

Chomsky, born in East Oak Lane, Pa., Directed his college career in several directions. Perhaps the best known are his facet of researcher and psycholinguist, as well as his relentless political activism as a defender of anarcho-syndicalism.

As an academic, he formulated his theory of language development. As an activist, he has published (and continues to publish) valuable works in which he analyzes the impact of US imperialism on international geopolitics, while being one of the discourse’s most prestigious analysts.

Table of Contents

The sentences of Noam Chomsky to understand his political thought

This versatility in the subjects tackled by Chomsky aroused equal admiration and suspicion.. He is criticized for his ongoing disagreement with US foreign policy. However, few people question the fact that Noam Chomsky is one of the brightest and most prolific thinkers of the 20th and 21st centuries.

In this article, we are going to know your best famous quotes and phrases.

1. Case by case, we see that conformism is the easy way, and the way of privilege and prestige; dissent, however, comes with personal costs.

His political activism has led to powerful detractors.

2. The people honored in the Bible were the false prophets. Those we call prophets were those who were imprisoned and commanded in the wilderness.

A reflection by Noam Chomsky on one of the fundamental pillars on which the Catholic Church bases its doctrine.

3. If you assume that there is no hope, then you guarantee that there will be no hope. If you assume that there is an instinct for freedom, then there are opportunities to make a difference.

A phrase from Chomsky that recalls that of the great Eduardo Galeano.

4. People pay for their own subordination.

Accepting a precarious job or paying thousands of dollars for a postgraduate degree are signs of living in a grateful slave society.

5. The basic idea that runs through modern history and modern liberalism is that the public must be marginalized. The general public is seen only as excluded from ignorant interference, like disoriented cattle.

Western democracy suffers from a real feeling of transfer of decision-making power to the people.

6. When you have the chance to take a look at the file they keep on you at the FBI, that’s when you find out that intelligence agencies in general are extremely incompetent.

Looks like Chomsky got access to his own secret report and what he saw seems pretty ridiculous to him.

7. Intellectual tradition is servility to power, and if I did not betray it, I would be ashamed of myself.

University ethics are generally not very present, as Chomsky notes.

8. Freedom without opportunities is a demonic gift and refusing to give these opportunities is criminal.

An indirect critique of economic liberalism.

9. Who are the keepers of history? Historians, of course. Educated classes, in general. Part of its job is to shape our view of the past so that it supports the interests of the current power. If they don’t, they will likely be marginalized in one way or another.

Another reflection on power relations in today’s society.

10. We shouldn’t be looking for heroes, we should be looking for good ideas.

Ideas and creativity above individualism and personalism.

11. What finance capital basically wants is stable currency, not growth.

A thought that challenges the financial system.

12. Businesses are just as totalitarian as Bolshevism or Fascism. They have the same intellectual roots of the early twentieth century. Therefore, just as other forms of totalitarianism had to disappear, private tyrannies must also disappear. They must be placed under public control.

The private enterprise and its vertical hierarchy have its days numbered, according to the reflection of the thinker and activist.

13. The principles are clear and explicit. The free market is good for the third world and its growing counterpart in our country. Mothers with dependent boys can be highly educated about the need for self-sufficiency, but not managers and dependent investors, please. For them, the benefactor state must flourish.

Another famous quote from Chomsky that reviews the status quo in contemporary capitalism.

14. Sport plays a societal role in the creation of patriotic and chauvinistic attitudes. Its purpose is to organize a community committed to its gladiators.

The hooligan phenomenon can be a powerful weapon of the neoliberal system.

15. If we don’t believe in the freedom of expression of those we despise, we don’t believe in it.

Are there limits to freedom of expression?

16. Propaganda is to a democracy what coercion is to a totalitarian state.

A parallelism that can make us reflect on the so-called free society in which we live.

17. If you don’t develop a constant and vibrant democratic culture capable of involving candidates, they will not do the things you voted for them. Pressing a button and then going to the booth will not change anything.

Another reflection on democratic politics and culture.

18. Rights are not granted, they are conquered.

Democracy was not delivered by the guarantors of the dictatorship.

19. Part of the reason capitalism seems to be successful is that it has always had a lot of forced labor, half the population. What women do – outside of the working world – doesn’t count for anything.

Feminism and social criticism, two key elements of Noam Chomsky’s work.

20. The criticism of “democracy” among anarchists has often been the criticism of parliamentary democracy, as it has emerged in societies with deeply repressive features.

Anarchism and its vision of public life.

21. You cannot have a functioning democracy without what sociologists call “side organizations,” places where people can meet, plan, talk and develop ideas.

The meeting places for people are essential for making large-scale changes.

22. The purpose of mass media … is not so much to inform and report on what is going on, but rather to shape public opinion according to the agendas of dominant corporate power.

The media and their harmful influence on the opinions of the uninformed population.

23. Who are the keepers of history?

A rhetorical phrase that refers to the ruling classes.

24. The United States is unusual among industrial democracies in terms of the rigidity of the system of ideological control, indoctrination, we might say, exercised through the media.

Another thought that delves into the manipulation exercised by the mass media.

Famous quotes about education and learning

since Chomsky developed much of his intellectual career as a psycholinguist and educational philosopher.It is also interesting to echo several of his sentences and quotes that deal with this subject.

25. The purpose of education is to show people how to learn on their own. The other concept of education is indoctrination.

A clear sentence that tells us what should be the way forward in education.

26. Education has value in itself, regardless of the economic impact it has on society.

A reflection against the excessive economism with which the education system is organized today.

27. Do we want to have a society of free, creative and independent individuals able to appreciate, learn from and contribute to cultural achievements of the past, or do we want people to increase GDP? It is not necessarily the same thing.

In the same line as above.

28. If you don’t know what you’re getting yourself into Looking at, if you have no idea what’s relevant, ready to challenge that idea, if you don’t, exploring the internet is just taking random, unverifiable facts that mean nothing.

The internet can be very useful, but it takes good judgment to know where to navigate.

29. The Internet is like any other technology, fundamentally neutral, you can use it in a constructive or harmful way. The constructive forms are real, but very few.

Famous quote which, like the previous one, questions the use we give to the network of networks.

30. In the common problems of human life, science tells us very little and scientists, as people, are certainly not guides. In fact, they are often the worst guides, as they often tend to focus, like a laser, on their own professional interests and know very little about the world.

An essential difference between the scientist and the free-thinker.

31. Science is an exploration of very difficult questions. Without underestimating the theory of evolution, this is a terrible intellectual breakthrough, but it doesn’t tell you anything about whether or not there is what people believe when they talk about God. He doesn’t even talk about it.

Religion is another of the subjects of study of the Jewish intellectual.

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