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A collection of quotes and sayings by Augusto Roa Bastos on writing, humanity, people, facts, books, change and more.

14 Augusto Roa Bastos Quotes That You Must Remember

Famous As: Novelist
Born On: June 13, 1917
Died On: April 26, 2005
Born In: Asunción
Died At Age: 87

Augusto Roa Bastos was a Paraguayan short story writer and novelist. Bastos volunteered to work in a hospital  during the Chaco war when he was just 15 years old. It was during his interactions with the dying soldiers that made him think and motivated him to write. During 1940-1941, Bastos wrote numerous poems and plays, which were played on stage too. ‘El Ruisenor De La Aurora’ was the first book, which he published in the year 1942. Bastos even tried his hands at journalism when he wrote for ‘El Pais’. Bastos also had an alternate career in movies wherein he wrote film scripts and translated most of the Guarani songs into Spanish. Not leaving his writing career behind, he published his collection of short stories titles ‘Thunder among The Leaves’. ‘Hijo de hombre’ was his first major novel and it was published in 1960. It earned him an invitation to teach at the National University of Rosario. ‘Yo el Supremo’, ‘Hijo de hombre’ and ‘El naranjalardiente’ are few of his other popular works. He wrote on various subjects that included humanity, mankind, nature and life. We have gathered few of his quotes and sayings from his work and life.

It is not by believing but by doubting that one can attain to the truth, which is ever changing form and condition.

Augusto Roa Bastos

To write does not mean to convert the real into words but to make the power of the word real.

Augusto Roa Bastos

Forms disappear, words remain, to signify the impossible.

Augusto Roa Bastos

In all nations an exceptional man exists that compensates the deficiencies of the remainder. In those moments, when humanity is found collectively in a state of decadence, there always remain those exceptional beings as point of reference.

Augusto Roa Bastos

Man is an idiot. He doesn't know how to do anything without copying, without imitating, without plagiarizing, without aping. It might even have been that man invented generation by coitus after seeing the grasshopper copulate.

Augusto Roa Bastos

Facts can't be recounted; much less twice over, and far less still by different persons. I've already drummed that thoroughly into your head.

Augusto Roa Bastos

There is always time to take more time.

Augusto Roa Bastos

Letters couldn't care less whether what is written with them is true or false.

Augusto Roa Bastos

There were epochs in the history of humanity in which the writer was a sacred person. He wrote the sacred books, universal books, the codes, the epic, the oracles. Sentences inscribed on the walls of the crypts; examples in the portals of the temples. But in those times the writer was not an individual alone; he was the people.

Augusto Roa Bastos

What happens is that your wretched memory remembers the words and forgets what's behind them

Augusto Roa Bastos

The things that have come into being change continually. The man with a good memory remembers nothing because he forgets nothing.

Augusto Roa Bastos

The dictionary is an ossuary of empty words.

Augusto Roa Bastos

Anyone who attempts to relate his life loses himself in the immediate. One can only speak of another.

Augusto Roa Bastos

The great principle of Justice: prevent crime rather than punish it. All that is needed to execute a guilty man is a firing squad or a hangman. To prevent there being guilty men requires great astuteness.

Augusto Roa Bastos