William Saroyan Quotes

Indians are born with an instinct for riding, rowing, hunting, fishing, and swimming. Americans are born with an instinct for fooling around with machines.

Modern science establishes that aptitude and skill with machines is not instinctual nor is it genetic. It is experiential based on upbringing and education. Also, note the fact that the quotation refers to “Americans” as non-Indians. Indians are somehow not Americans. It is not clear that Saroyan personally believed this or did not. He wrote the dialog for a character of the play in the citation. Based on his outlook and other writings, it is probable that he was just trying to depict a relatively ignorant bigot. With Novelists and playwrights, separating the characters from their authors can sometimes be a challenge.

William Saroyan, 1908-1981, Writer & Playwright, "Locomotive 38, the Ojibway", 1940

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William Saroyan
William Saroyan
  • Born: August 31, 1908
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William Saroyan was an Armenian-American novelist, playwright, and short story writer. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1940, and in 1943 won the Academy Award for Best Story for the film adaptation of his novel The Human Comedy.

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