32 Profound Harper Lee Quotes We’ll Never Forget

“The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.”

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2. “As you grow up, always tell the truth, do no harm to others, and don’t think you are the most important being on earth.”
Letters of Note, 2006

3. “The book to read is not the one that thinks for you but the one which makes you think.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

4. “People generally see what they look for, and hear what they listen for.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

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6. “Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself…It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.”
An interview, 1964

7. “Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

8. “In New York you are your own person. You may reach out and embrace all of Manhattan in sweet aloneness, or you can go to hell if you want to.”
Go Set a Watchman

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10. “Prejudice, a dirty word, and faith, a clean one, have something in common: they both begin where reason ends.”
Go Set a Watchman

11. “With him, life was routine, without him, life was unbearable.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

12. “But a man who has lived by truth—and you have believed in what he has lived—he does not leave you merely wary when he fails you, he leaves you with nothing.”
Go Set a Watchman

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14. “There’s a lot of ugly things in this world, son. I wish I could keep ‘em all away from you. That’s never possible.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

15. “Don’t you study about other folks’s business till you take care of your own.”
Go Set a Watchman

16. “Mutual defiance made them alike.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

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18. “Remember this also: it’s always easy to look back and see what we were, yesterday, ten years ago. It is hard to see what we are. If you can master that trick, you’ll get along.”
Go Set a Watchman

19. “I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.”
Writer’s Digest, 1961

20. “Real courage is when you know you’re licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

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22. “Now, 75 years [after To Kill a Mockingbird], in an abundant society where people have laptops, cell phones, iPods, and minds like empty rooms, I still plod along with books.”
O Magazine, July 2006

23. “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view…until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

24. “Things are always better in the morning.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

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26. “…Man’s capacity to love is measured by his degree of freedom from the drives that turn inward upon him. As one holds down a cork to the bottom of a stream, so may love be imprisoned by self: remove self, and love rises to the surface of man’s being.”
Vogue, 1961

27. “We’re paying the highest tribute you can pay a man. We trust him to do right. It’s that simple.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

28. “I guess it’s like an airplane: they’re the drag and we’re the thrust, together we make the thing fly. Too much of us and we’re nose-heavy, too much of them and we’re tail-heavy—it’s a matter of balance.”
Go Set a Watchman

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30. “[T]he time your friends need you is when they’re wrong, Jean Louise. They don’t need you when they’re right.”
Go Set a Watchman

31. “You just hold your head high and keep those fists down. No matter what anybody says to you, don’t you let ‘em get your goat. Try fightin’ with your head for a change.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

32. “Mockingbirds don’t do one thing but make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corncribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”
To Kill a Mockingbird

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