partial or total inability to hear
- Pozzo: [suddenly furious] Have you not done tormenting me with your accursed time! It's abominable! When! When! One day, is that not enough for you, one day he went dumb, one day I went blind, one day we'll go deaf, one day we were born, one day we shall die, the same day, the same second, is that not enough for you? [calmer] They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it's night once more.
- Like the majority of deaf people, I don't like blind people much.
- When the imagination sleeps, words are emptied of their meaning: a deaf population absent-mindedly registers the condemnation of a man. … there is no other solution but to speak out and show the obscenity hidden under the verbal cloak.
- I figured I could get a job at a filling station somewhere, putting gas and oil in people's cars. I didn't care what kind of job it was, though. Just so people didn't know me and I didn't know anybody. I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes. That way I wouldn't have to have any goddamn stupid useless conversations with anybody. If anybody wanted to tell me something, they'd have to write it on a piece of paper and shove it over to me. They'd get bored as hell doing that after a while, and then I'd be through with having conversations for the rest of my life. Everybody'd think I was just a poor deaf-mute bastard and they'd leave me alone.
- Il ne voit que la nuit, n'entend que le silence.
- None so deaf as those that will not hear.
- Matthew Henry, Commentaries, Psalm LVIII.
- Who is so deaf as he that will not hear?
- George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum (1651).
- God: Moses, this is the Lord, thy God, commanding you to obey my law. Do you hear me?
Moses: Yes, I hear you, I hear you...a deaf man could hear you!
Moses: Nothing, forget about it, Oh Lord! Why have you chosen me? What would you have me do for you?
- History of the World: Part I (1981).
- Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.
- Isaiah 35:5.
- The problems of deafness are deeper and more complex, if not more important, than those of blindness. Deafness is a much worse misfortune. For it means the loss of the most vital stimulus — the sound of the voice that brings language, sets thoughts astir and keeps us in the intellectual company of man.
- Helen Keller, letter to Dr. James Kerr Love (1910), published in Helen Keller in Scotland: a personal record written by herself (1933), edited by James Kerr Love. Paraphrasing of this statement may have been the origin of a similar one which has become attributed to her:
- He cannot hear the skylark sing,
The music of the wild bee’s wing;
The murmur of the plaining bough ;
A gentle whisper fairy low;
The noise of falling waters near—
All these have left his mournful ear.
- Letitia Elizabeth Landon, Fisher's Drawing Room Scrap Book, 1832 (1831), 'The Deaf Schoolmaster'
- Cha vel fer erbee cha bouyr, as eshyn nagh jean clashtyn.
- In rage, deaf as the sea, hasty as fire.
- Pleasure and revenge
Have ears more deaf than adders to the voice
Of any true decision.
- O, that men's ears should be
To counsel deaf, but not to flattery!
- They never would hear,
But turn the deaf ear,
As a matter they had no concern in.
- Jonathan Swift, Dingley and Brent.
- Deaf and blind and dumb and born to follow
What you need is someone strong to guide you
- It's important to abolish the unconscious dogmatism that makes people think their way of looking at reality is the only sane way of viewing the world. My goal is to try to get people into a state of generalized agnosticism, not agnosticism about God alone, but agnosticism about everything. If one can only see things according to one's own belief system, one is destined to become virtually deaf, dumb, and blind.