Karl Kraus: Half Truths and One and a Half Truths: Selected Aphorisms on Satire

09 November 2019

  • Satire chooses and knows no objects. It arises by fleeing from them and their forcing themselves upon it.
  • One shouldn’t always name names. What should be said is not that someone has done it, but that it was possible to do it.
  • Through my satire I make little people so big that afterwards they are worthy objects of my satire and no one can reproach me any longer.
  • If someone calls me vain and mean, I know that he trusts me and has something to confess to me.
  • From a torch something drops occasionally. A little lump of pitch.
  • A pun, though despicable in itself, can be the noblest vehicle of an artistic intention by serving as the abbreviation of a witty view. It can be social criticism in the form of an epigram.
  • Satires which the censor understands are rightly prohibited.

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