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Narrative Theory Quotes


"Any theory is better than no theory." - Fuller Albright

"Observations always involve theory." - Edwin Powell Hubble

"Theory can blind observation." - Carol Gilligan

"Wonderful theory, wrong species." - E O Wilson

"Observations always involve theory." - Edwin Hubble

"Theory without data is myth: data without theory is madness." - Phil Zuckerman

"Yoga is 99% practice and 1% theory." - K. Pattabhi Jois

"Could Shakespeare give a theory of Shakespeare?" - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"There is no knowledge without theory." - W Edwards Deming

"We want best efforts guided by theory." - W Edwards Deming

"Without theory we can only copy." - W Edwards Deming

"That's not a conspiracy theory, it's history." - James Dye

"Gray is the color of all theory" - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

"Perfectly correct chess exists only in theory." - Garry Kasparov

"Not every conspiracy is a theory," - James Badge Dale

"In art, practice always comes before theory." - Pablo Picasso

"Without a theory the facts are silent." - Friedrich August von Hayek

"Topology and number theory are my faves." - Janna Levin

"The best practice is inspired by theory." - Donald Knuth

"The best theory is inspired by practice." - Donald Knuth

"Statistics: the mathematical theory of ignorance." - Morris Kline

"I don't teach narrative theory by itself anymore, but I kind of use it when critiquing student manuscripts. So, it works its way in there, whether I like it or not." - Rob Roberge

"At DePauw, I was teaching writing and fiction. The things I wanted to teach, more than anything else, were form and theory of the novel, of narrative. I liked those classes." - Nic Pizzolatto

"Theory and practice sometimes clash. And when that happens, theory loses. Every single time." - Linus Torvalds

"I don't think that design needs theory, but I think designers need theory." - Johanna Drucker

"In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; In practice, there is." - Chuck Reid

"M-theory is the unified theory Einstein was hoping to find." - Stephen Hawking

"Experience without theory is blind, but theory without experience is mere intellectual play." - Immanuel Kant

"In theory, practice should work like theory. In practice, it doesn't." - Yogi Berra

"Never abandon a theory that explains something until you have a theory that explains more." - John Mccarthy

"It is wiser, I believe, to arrive at theory by way of evidence rather than the other way around.... It is more rewarding, in any case, to assemble the facts first and, in the process of arranging them in narrative form, to discover a theory or a historical generalization emerging of its own accord." - Barbara Tuchman

"One absolutely crucial change is that feminist film theory is today an academic subject to be studied and taught. "Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema" was a political intervention, primarily influenced by the Women's Liberation Movement and, in my specific case, a Women's Liberation study group, in which we read Freud and realised the usefulness of psychoanalytic theory for a feminist project." - Laura Mulvey

"'Breaking Bad.' Because it's the best American narrative fiction of the last ten years." - David Benioff

"I love narrative and sometimes I feel frustrated with stand-up." - Rachel Zucker

"Economics is a narrative discipline, and explanations are easy to fit retrospectively." - Nassim Nicholas Taleb

"Experience by itself teaches nothing...Without theory, experience has no meaning. Without theory, one has no questions to ask. Hence without theory there is no learning." - W Edwards Deming

"Experience by itself teaches nothing... Without theory, experience has no meaning. Without theory, one has no questions to ask. Hence, without theory, there is no learning." - W Edwards Deming

"I have a theory that, for people of color or others who have been cut out of the master narrative, just telling your personal survival tale, your story, is civic engagement. It is a kind of political performance and is really crucial in that storytelling is how the writers connect with people and change. It's how we collect and add to and complicate the master narrative." - Faith Adiele

"It is the theory that decides what can be observed." - Albert Einstein

"The ultimate, most holy form of theory is action." - Nikos Kazantzakis

"The theory of government changes with general progress." - Ulysses S Grant

"How empty is theory in the presence of fact!" - Mark Twain

"Theory now: concern for truth must not hobble our discussion." - Mason Cooley

"The theory of truth is a series of truisms." - J L Austin

"A rational prediction has an explanation based on theory." - W Edwards Deming

"We should be guided by theory, not by numbers." - W Edwards Deming

"Without theory there is nothing to modify or learn." - W Edwards Deming

"Theory is good; but it doesn't prevent things from existing." - Jean-Martin Charcot

"As the saying goes not every conspiracy is a theory." - Joseph Finder

"The origins of graph theory are humble, even frivolous." - Norman L. Biggs

"An ounce of practice is better than tons of theory." - Vishnudevananda Saraswati

"Capitalism sounds good in theory but it just doesn't work." - Edward Abbey

"It is theory that decides what can be observed." - Albert Einstein

"Life had stepped into the place of theory." - Fyodor Dostoevsky

"A little experience often upsets a lot of theory." - S. Parkes Cadman

"A theory which cannot be mortally endangered cannot be alive." - W. A. H. Rushton

"Behavior is the theory of manners practically applied." - Bill Vaughan

"Axioms are delightful in theory, but impossible in practice." - Antoine Rivarol

"The humanitarian in theory is the terrorist in action." - Isabel Paterson

"Nothing is more practical than a good theory." - Ludwig Boltzmann

"System administration is where theory meets practice with a vengeance." - Steve Simmons

"He that travels in theory has no inconveniences." - Samuel Johnson

"A good scientific theory should be explicable to a barmaid." - Ernest Rutherford

"A gram of experience is worth a ton of theory." - Lord Salisbury

"Pleasure is the only thing worth having a theory about," - Oscar Wilde

"If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts." - Albert Einstein

"I have just got a new theory of eternity." - Albert Einstein

"The secret of theory is that truth does not exist." - Jean Baudrillard

"My theory of evolution is that Darwin was adopted." - Steven Wright

"The oldest theory of contract is I think negative." - Frederick Pollock

"I've never been much for theory and scales." - Adrian Smith

"An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Without revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary movement." - Vladimir Lenin

"If you can't think of an observation that could disprove a theory, that theory simply isn't scientific." - Jerry A. Coyne

"The electron is a theory. But the theory is so good we can almost consider them real." - Richard P Feynman

"The calcium theory has probably done more to damage our health than any single theory in the history of humanity." - David Wolfe

"I need to tell the things that are important but which don't make sense in terms of the narrative, things that would destroy symmetry or narrative pace. This is my personal belief about what it means to write nonfiction." - Akhil Sharma

"As writers and readers, we're drawn to conflict. It's that ancient theory of plot that's written on the whiteboard during every fiction workshop, characters who want something overcoming obstacles as a way to create narrative momentum and suspense. So there's that, that trauma gives us more plot." - Leslie Pietrzyk

"Here's my theory: I think both fiction and role-playing games involve a narrative journey. When that journey never ends, it feeds an addictive cycle. When that journey has an end, it brings us back to ourselves and to our own lives. This return allows us to reflect. Perhaps this is why I prefer a closed structure for books and games." - Allegra Goodman

"Cognitive psychology has shown that the mind best understands facts when they are woven into a conceptual fabric, such as a narrative, mental map, or intuitive theory. Disconnected facts in the mind are like unlinked pages on the Web: They might as well not exist." - Steven Pinker

"What the British seem to like are television historians and naturalists, not public intellectuals. You can't help feeling that's because one supplies narrative and the other supplies facts, and the British are traditionally empiricists so they/we have a resistance to theory and to theoreticians playing too prominent a role in public life." - Will Self

"My god is narrative filmmaking." - Darren Aronofsky

"I like to move around in the landscape between poetry and prose, between the lyrical and the narrative." - Rigoberto Gonzalez

"The best stories are often true...The narrative of human life is most beautiful when told truthfully and without boundaries." - Shonda Rhimes

"I hear music as narrative." - Ajay Naidu

"Forecasting is simply not a strength of the species; we are much better with tools and narrative storytelling." - Barry Ritholtz

"The revolution which began with the creation of quantum theory and relativity theory can only be finished with their unification into a single theory that can give us a single, comprehensive picture of nature." - Lee Smolin

"There is a distinction, but no opposition, between theory and practice. Each to a certain extent supposes the other. Theory is dependent on practice; practice must have preceded theory." - Sir William Hamilton, 9th Baronet

"Why is Einstein's theory better than Lorentz's theory? It would be a mistake to argue that Einstein's theory gives an explanation of Michelson's experiment, since it does not do so. Michelson's experiment is simply taken over as an axiom." - Hans Reichenbach

"The Steady State theory was what Karl Popper would call a good scientific theory: it made definite predictions, which could be tested by observation, and possibly falsified. Unfortunately for the theory, they were falsified." - Stephen Hawking

"Creationists reject Darwin's theory of evolution on the grounds that it is just a theory. This is a valid criticism: evolution is indeed merely a theory, albeit one with ten billion times more credence than the theory of creationism - although, to be fair, the theory of creationism is more than just a theory. It's also a fairy story. And children love fairy stories, which is presumably why so many creationists are keen to have their whimsical gibberish taught in schools." - Charlie Brooker

"Whether or not you can observe a thing depends upon the theory you use. It is the theory which decides what can be observed." - Albert Einstein

"Experience arises together with theoretical assumptions not before them, and an experience without theory is just as incomprehensible as is (allegedly) a theory without experience." - Paul Feyerabend

"God runs electromagnetics by wave theory on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and the Devil runs them by quantum theory on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday." - William Lawrence Bragg

"What is especially striking and remarkable is that in fundamental physics a beautiful or elegant theory is more likely to be right than a theory that is inelegant." - Murray Gell-Mann

"A new theory is guilty until proven innocent, and the pre-existing theory innocent until proven guilty ... Continental drift was guilty until proven innocent." - David M. Raup

"The older theory was, marry an older man because they're more mature. But the new theory is men don't mature. Marry a younger one." - Rita Rudner

"A theory which is not refutable by any conceivable event is non-scientific. Irrefutability is not a virtue of a theory (as people often think) but a vice." - Karl Popper

"Climate change is the perfect pseudoscientific theory for a big government politician who wants more power. Why? Because it is a theory that can never be disproven." - Ted Cruz

"Well, the old theory was marry an older man because they're more mature. But the new theory is men don't mature - marry a young one." - Rita Rudner

"Whether you can observe a thing or not depends on the theory which you use. It is the theory which decides what can be observed." - Albert Einstein

"What makes a leftist a leftist is not this or that theory but his ability to integrate any theory into the kitsch called the Grand March." - Milan Kundera

"According to 'M' theory, ours is not the only universe. Instead, 'M' theory predicts that a great many universes were created out of nothing." - Stephen Hawking

"Don't confuse hypothesis and theory. The former is a possible explanation; the latter, the correct one. The establishment of theory is the very purpose of science." - Martin H Fischer

"To an intellectual who is adrift in politics, a theory is an aim; to a true politician his theory is a boundary." - Francis Parker Yockey

"No theory is good unless it permits, not rest, but the greatest work. No theory is good except on condition that one use it to go on beyond." - Andre Gide

"A thing may look specious in theory, and yet be ruinous in practice; a thing may look evil in theory, and yet be in practice excellent." - Edmund Burke

"Evolution is a fact. It is the best explanation of what is known from observations. It's a theory as powerful as the theory of gravity." - Donald Johanson

"Reading a novel after reading semiotic theory was like jogging empty-handed after jogging with hand weights. What exquisite guilt she felt, wickedly enjoying narrative! Madeleine felt safe with a nineteenth century novel. There were going to be people in it. Something was going to happen to them in a place resembling the world. Then too there were lots of weddings in Wharton and Austen. There were all kinds of irresistible gloomy men." - Jeffrey Eugenides

"Last time I checked, lifting theory has a PR of zero." - Steve Shaw

"Facts do not 'speak for themselves'; they are read in the light of theory." - Stephen Jay Gould

"If I subscribed to the efficient market theory I would still be delivering papers" - Warren Buffett

"Theory can leave questions unanswered, but practice has to come up with something." - Mason Cooley

"the true lady is in theory either a virgin or a lawful wife." - Emily James Smith Putnam

"People are experience-rich and theory-poor. I help people organize / make sense of their experiences." - Malcolm Gladwell

"My theory about Jack is that he's not a very good parent." - Victor Garber

"Even for practical purposes theory generally turns out the most important thing in the end." - Oliver Wendell Holmes

"Science is organized common sense where many a beautiful theory was killed by an ugly fact." - Thomas Henry Huxley

"All theory is against the freedom of the will; all experience for it." - Samuel Johnson

"My theory is that men are no more liberated than women." - Indira Gandhi

"The power of a theory is exactly proportional to the diversity of situations it can explain." - Elinor Ostrom

"The knowledge of the theory of logic has no tendency whatever to make men good reasoners." - Thomas B. Macaulay

".. the voice of nature and experience seems plainly to oppose the selfish theory." - David Hume

"She firmly held the theory that everyone gets at least one very stupid superpower." - Maureen Johnson

"All science has one aim, namely, to find a theory of nature." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Philosophy is, in the last instance, class struggle in the field of theory." - Louis Althusser

"Such simple instincts as bees making a beehive could be sufficient to overthrow my whole theory." - Charles Darwin

"No matter how much theory progresses, how radically styles change, chess play is inconceivable without tactics." - Samuel Reshevsky

"Despite the development of chess theory, there is much that remains secret and unexplored in chess." - Vasily Smyslov

""So basically, that entire theory is blown to hell."Not basically," Win corrected. "Entirely."" - Harlan Coben

"...operational's all theory until you see for yourself whether or not something works." - Julia Child

"If slaves will make good soldiers, then our whole theory of slavery is wrong." - Howell Cobb

"Lacanian theory must be understood as a kind of "slave morality." - Judith Butler

"My whole theory about art is the disparity that exists between form, masses and movement." - Alexander Calder

"Relativity theory forced the abandonment, in principle, of absolute space and absolute time." - Marshall Mcluhan

"Prohibition may be a disputed theory, but none can say that it doesn't hold water." - Thomas L. Masson

"We all agree that your theory is crazy, but is it crazy enough?" - Niels Bohr

"Facts do not 'speak for themselves', they are read in the light of theory." - Stephen Jay Gould

"I grow daily to honor facts more and more, and theory less and less." - Thomas Carlyle

"The theory of marketing is solid but the practice of marketing leaves much to be desired." - Philip Kotler

"If the 'germ theory of disease' were correct, there'd be no one living to believe it." - B. J. Palmer

"Do not say hypothesis, and even less theory: say way of thinking." - Georg C Lichtenberg

"Psychoanalysis can provide a theory of 'progress,' but only by viewing history as a neurosis." - Norman O Brown

"We do what we can, and then make a theory to prove our performance the best." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Yoga is effort. Only practice is important. The rest of knowledge is only theory." - B.K.S. Iyengar

"It is almost impossible to have a baseless snobbish opinion of the General Theory of Relativity." - Michael Moorcock

"Catastrophe Theory is-quite likely-the first coherent attempt (since Aristotelian logic) to give a theory on analogy. When narrow-minded scientists object to Catastrophe Theory that it gives no more than analogies, or metaphors, they do not realise that they are stating the proper aim of Catastrophe Theory, which is to classify all possible types of analogous situations." - Rene Thom

"Theory looks well on paper, but does not amount to anything without practice." - Josh Billings

"Theory, from whatever source, is not perfect until it is reduced to practice." - Hosea Ballou

"Langmuir is a regular thinking machine. Put in facts, and you get out a theory." - Saul Dushman



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