writer, critic, Staff Writer, The New Yorker
Hilton Als (born 1960) is an American writer and theater critic.
- The damage suffered by people I know and love is almost always based on the trauma of the only elder they had treating them badly or being interested only in their silence. And what you’re left with, by the grace of God and some miracle, is this inner self. Our experiences are painful and sometimes annihilating, and if we have the strength to crawl out of and excavate that wreckage, we have to ask ourselves how to describe the truth of it.
- On wrestling with the idea of “protecting your elders” in “Hilton Als, The Art of the Essay No. 3” in The Paris Review (Summer 2018)
- I think I was just a very skinless person…And I had this terrible need to confess; and I still do it…It’s a bid to be loved, in some way.
- On writing in a confession manner in order to broadcast intimacy in “Hilton Als: ‘I had this terrible need to confess, and I still do it. It’s a bid to be loved’” in The Guardian (2018 Feb 2)
- In order to write anything profile-driven, I would become the person; and then I would analyse the person from within. Earlier, I would analyse them from without. But if I was going to write about him now, I would do it internally, so then it would be fiction.”
- On how his writing has changed in “Hilton Als: ‘I had this terrible need to confess, and I still do it. It’s a bid to be loved’” in The Guardian (2018 Feb 2)
- I think it means where the artist doesn’t necessarily have a full understanding of something, but they have deep empathy. They have some kind of amazing empathy with the characters in the world. I just think it means being openhearted and generous. I think that to be a conscious person is to sort through stuff in order to understand not just yourself but how you feel in the world.
- On how he defines “soulful” in “Hilton Als on What It Means to Be Hopeful, Despite the World” in LitHub (2015 Dec 16)