Sarah Vowell

(Sarah Jane Vowell)

Sarah Vowell
Sarah Vowell
  • Born: December 27, 1969
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Historian, Author, Journalist, Essayist, Social Commentator, Actress

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Sarah Jane Vowell is an American historian, author, journalist, essayist, social commentator and actress. Often referred to as a "social observer," Vowell has written seven nonfiction books on American history and culture. She was a contributing editor for the radio program This American Life on Public Radio International from 1996 to 2008, where she produced numerous commentaries and documentaries and toured the country in many of the program's live shows. She was also the voice of Violet Parr in the animated film The Incredibles and its 2018 sequel.

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America has saved the world most of the time, but messed it up a couple of times. Foreign Aid ;Foreign Policy, World & International Affairs
Except for the people who were there that one day they discovered the polio vaccine, being part of history is rarely a good idea. History is one war after another with a bunch of murders and natural disasters in between. History
Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves, Robert Lincoln bought a nice ski lodge.
Assassins and presidents invite the same basic question: Just who do you think you are?
History is full of really good stories. That's the main reason I got into this racket: I want to make the argument that history is interesting. History
I didn't come from any kind of academic background, but I lived in a college town and I knew people who weren't without pretense. There was this idea in the town that if something was European it would be good.
I discovered that Robert Todd Lincoln was there for each of the first three assassinations. I wanted to write about the Lincoln Memorial, so when I found out he had attended its dedication, that helped focus it further.
I get younger people who watch Conan or The Daily Show, but before that it was mostly people who knew me from public radio. Those people are kind of old.
I hated the lost colony; in second grade, we were doing American History, and they said, We don't know what happened to them. That drove me nuts. That lost colony drove me crazy. History
I loved that these two guys argued with each other as if movies actually mattered. Nobody I knew talked about movies that way, but Siskel and Ebert took each movie as it came and talked about whether it was a success on its own terms. Success ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
I seem to have no problem revealing my crush on the man who murdered Lincoln.
I was a big Nancy Drew reader. Nancy figures it out. Case closed.
I'm a big fan of editing and keeping only the interesting bits in.
In death, you get upgraded into a saint no matter how much people hated you in life. Life ;Death
Jesus and Lincoln, Moses and Jefferson can seem so long gone, so unbelievable, so dead.
Like Lincoln, I would like to believe the ballot is stronger than the bullet. Then again, he said that before he got shot.
Most people don't like to talk about violent historical death. Death
My audience is going to die before I do.
Not that I want the current president killed. I will, for the record and for the FBI agent assigned to read this and make sure I mean no harm, clearly state that while I am obsessed with death, I am against it. Death
One night last summer, all the killers in my head assembled on a stage in Massachusetts to sing show tunes.
Part of the success of This American Life, I think, is due to the fact that none of us sound like we should be on the radio. We don't sound professional; we sound like people you would know. Life ;Success
Relics are treasured as something close to the divine.
The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Civil War - when I really think about them, they all seem about as likely as the parting of the Red Sea. War & Peace
The one time I was an actor, it happened to be in a globally dominant juggernaut. That was lucky. Time
The whole point of Louis Armstrong is that no one can really figure him out. There was a while where I thought you could try.
We go in to liberate Cuba, but Cuba still isn't free; we don't really think through what we'll do after the initial treaty is signed, but we're still occupying. There's chaos and torture and finally an outcry.
What are you hiding? No one ever asks that.
While I gave up God a long time ago, I never shook the habit of wanting to believe in something. So I replaced my creed of everlasting life with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Life ;Time ;Happiness & Unhappiness

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