"In my early 20s, I studied history and politics, and I really thought that perhaps I would devote my life to that."
"Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future."Wallace Shawn on John F. Kennedy
"Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress but I repeat myself."Wallace Shawn on Mark Twain
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors."Wallace Shawn on Plato
"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand."Wallace Shawn on Milton Friedman
"It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything."Wallace Shawn on Joseph Stalin
"I led the life of an intellectual up until a certain age. I remember Freud's 'Interpretation of Dreams' was a big favorite when I was 11. It sounded so interesting. And it really was!"
"I think the whole system of education would change if I were in charge and had the ability to make changes. I don't think I would keep Princeton exactly being Princeton."
"But because we've all been readers, we know what the experience is like, and we hope that what certain writers have given to us, we will give to someone."
"You can go to a play that is enjoyable because it's funny, and then on the next night you can go to a play that's enjoyable because it's 'disturbing.'"
"I don't happen to have a sense of humor personally, so I don't know what's funny about a character... This happens to be a feature of my life generally."