- Man is an imaging being.
Gaston Bachelard (1884-1962) French philosopher and scientist. The Petics of Reverie (1969), ch. 2, sect. 10
- The human imagination…has great difficulty in living strictly within the confines of a materialist practice or philosophy. It dreams, like a dog in its basket, of hares in the open.
John Berger (b.1926) British novelist, essayist, and art critic. “The Soul and the Operator,” Keeping a Rendezuous (1992)
- Mix your knowledge with imagination and mix both.
Clarence Birdseye (1886-1956) U.S. businessman and founder of Birdseye. American Magazine (February 1951)
- Live out of your imagination, not your history.
Arthur Bryan (b.1923) British chairman of Josiah Wedgwood & Sons Ltd. Seven Habits of Highly-Effective People (1990)
- The Fancy is indeed no other than a mode of memory emancipated from the order of time and space.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) British poet. Biographia Literaria (1817), ch. 13
- The imaginations which people have on one another are the solid facts of society.
Charles Horton Cooley (1864-1929) U.S. sociologist. Human Nature and the Social Order (1902), ch. 3
- Where there is no imagination there is no horror.
Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930) British writer an doctor. A Study in Scarlet (1887), ch. 5
- What is the imagination? Only an arm or weapon of the interior energy; only the precursor of the reason.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-82) U.S. essayist, lecturer, and poet. “Books,” Society and Soltitude (1870)
- It would be a great mistake to confine your imagination to the way things have always been done. In fact, it would consign you to the mediocrity of the marketplace.
Harold S. Geneen (1910-97) U.S. telecommunications entrepreneur and C.E.O. of ITT. Management (co-written with Alvin Moscow; 1984), ch. 13
- The moment a person forms a theory his imagination sees in every object only the traits which favor that theory.
Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) U.S. president. Letter to Charles Thompson (September 20, 1787)
- My imagination makes me human and makes me a fool; it gives all the world and exiles me from it.
Ursula K. Le Guin (b.1929) U.S. author. “Winged the Adventures on my Mind,” Harper’s (August 1990)
- Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today.
John Lennon (1940-80) British rock musician and songwriter. “Imagine” (1971)
- His imagination resembled the wings of an ostrich. It enabled him to run, though not to soar.
Thomas Babington Macaulay (1800-59) British politician and historian. Referring to John Dryden. “John Dryden,” Essays and Biographies (1828)
- The capacity to exercise a relatively high degree of imagination, inguenuity and creativity in the solution of organizational problems is widely, not narrowly, distributed in the population.
Douglas McGregor (1906-64) U.S. academic, educator and management theorist. The Human Side of Enterprise (1960)
- Imagination is the voice of daring. If there is anything Godlike about God it is that. He dared to imagine everything.
Henry Miller (1891-1980) U.S. writer. Sexus (1965), ch. 14
- The life of nations no less than that of men is lived largely in the imagination.
Enoch Powell (1912-98) British politician. 1946. Epigraph. Quoted in English Culture and the Decline of the Industrial Spirit, 1850-1980 (Martin J. Weiner; 1981)
- Give me an ounce of civet, good apothecary, to sweeten my imagination.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English poet and playwright. King Lear (1605-06) , Act 4, Scene 4, II. 132-133
- Tell me where is fancy bred.
Or in the heart or in the head?
How begot, how nourished?
William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English poet and playwright. The Merchant of Venice (1596-98), Act 3, Scene 2, II. 63-65
- I dream for a living.
Steven Spielberg (b.1946) U.S. director. Time (July 1985)
- The imagination is man’s power over nature.
Wallace Stevens (1879-1955) U.S. poet. “Adagia,” Opus posthumous (Samuel French Morse, ed.; 1957)
- Skill without imagination is craftsmanship and gives us many useful objects such as wickerwork picnic baskets. Imagination without skill gives us modern art.
Tom Stoppard (b.1937) British playwright and screenwriter. Artist Descending a Staircase (1988)
- Imagination was given to man to compensate him for what he is not. A sense of humour was provided to console him for what he is.
Horace Walpole (1717-97) British writer. Quoted in “The Artist,” A Kick in the Seat of the Pants (Roger von Oech; 1986)
- Imagination and fiction make up more than three quarters of our real life.
Simone Weil (1909-43) French philosopher and activist. Gravity and Grace (1952)