Quotes from Catch-22

Posted: May 16, 2006, 16:05:28 pm by jim

Quote 1: "an unreasonable belief that everybody around him was crazy, a homicidal impulse to machine-gun strangers, retrospective falsification, an unfounded suspicion that people hated him and were conspiring to kill him." Chapter 2, pg. 29

Quote 2: "He had decided to live forever or die in the attempt, and his only mission each time he went up was to come down alive." Chapter 3, pg. 38

Quote 3: "You're inches away from death every time you go on a mission. How much older can you be at your age?" Chapter 4, pg. 48

Quote 4: "There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle." Chapter 5, pg. 55

Quote 5: "'Catch-22...says you've always got to do what your commanding officer tells you to.

"'But Twenty-seventh Air Force says I can go home with forty missions.'

"'But they don't say you have to go home. And regulations do say you have to obey every order. That's the catch. Even if the colonel were disobeying a Twenty-seventh Air Force order by making you fly more missions, you'd still have to fly them, or you'd be guilty of disobeying an order of his. And then the Twenty-seventh Air Force Headquarters would really jump on you.'" Chapter 6, pg. 68

Quote 6: "History did not demand Yossarian's premature demise, justice could be satisfied without it, progress did not hinge upon it, victory did not depend on it. That men would die was a matter of necessity; which men would die, though, was a matter of circumstance, and Yossarian was willing to be the victim of anything but circumstance. But that was war." Chapter 8, pg. 75

Quote 7: "The case against Clevinger was open and shut. The only thing missing was something to charge him with." Chapter 8, pg. 80

Quote 8: "With a little ingenuity and vision, he had made it all but impossible for anyone in the squadron to talk to him, which was just fine with everyone, he noticed, since no one wanted to talk to him anyway." Chapter 9, pg. 111

Quote 9: "Open your eyes, Clevinger. It doesn't make a damned bit of difference who wins the war to someone who's dead." Chapter 12, pg. 133-134

Quote 10: "You know, that might be the answer - to act boastfully about something we ought to be ashamed of. That's a trick that never seems to fail." Chapter 13, pg. 149

Quote 11:"Yossarian's heart sank. Something was terribly wrong if everything was all right and they had no excuse for turning back." Chapter 14, pg. 150

Quote 12: Climb, you bastard! Climb, climb, climb, climb!" Chapter 15, pg. 157

Quote 13: "They couldn't dominate Death inside the hospital, but they certainly made her behave. They had taught her manners. They couldn't keep death out, but while she was in she had to act like a lady. People gave up the ghost with delicacy and taste inside the hospital. There was none of that crude, ugly ostentation about dying that was so common outside the hospital. They did not blow up in mid-air like Kraft or the dead man in Yossarian's tent, or freeze to death in the blazing summertime the way Snowden had frozen to death after spilling his secret to Yossarian in the back of the plane." Chapter 17, pg.176

Quote 14: The chaplain had "failed miserably, had choked up once again in the face of opposition from a stronger personality. It was a familiar, ignominious experience, and his opinion of himself was low." Chapter 20, pg. 208

Quote 15: "But I make a profit of three and a quarter cents an egg by selling them for four and a quarter cents an egg to the people in Malta I buy them from for seven cents an egg. Of course, I don't make the profit. The syndicate makes the profit. And everybody has a share." Chapter22, pg. 241

Quote 16: "'What is a country? A country is a piece of land surrounded on all sides by boundaries, usually unnatural. Englishmen are dying for England, Americans are dying for America, Germans are dying for Germany, Russians are dying for Russia. There are now fifty or sixty countries fighting in this war. Surely so many counties can't all be worth dying for.'" Chapter 23, pg. 257

Quote 17: "This time Milo had gone to far. Bombing his own men and planes was more than even the most phlegmatic observer could stomach, and it looked like the end for him...Milo was all washed up until he opened his books to the public and disclosed the tremendous profit he had made." Chapter 24, pg. 269

Quote 18: "You have no respect for excessive authority or obsolete traditions. You're dangerous and depraved, and you ought to be taken outside and shot!" Chapter 27, pg. 309

Quote 19: "that's the way things go when you elevate mediocre people to positions of authority." Chapter 29, pg. 335

Quote 20: "Dear Mrs., Mr., Miss, or Mr. And Mrs. Daneeka: Words cannot express the deep personal grief I experienced when your husband, son, father, or brother was killed, wounded, or reported missing in action." Chapter 31, pg. 355

Quote 21: "It doesn't make sense. It isn't even good grammar. What the hell does it mean to disappear somebody?" Chapter 34, pg. 378

Quote 22: "And looking very superior, he tossed down on the table a photostatic copy of a piece of V mail in which everything but the salutation "Dear Mary" had been blocked out and on which the censoring officer had written, 'I long for you tragically. A.T. Tappman, Chaplain, U.S. Army.'" Chapter 36, pg. 393

Quote 23: "Morale was deteriorating and it was all Yossarian's fault. The country was in peril; he was jeopardizing his traditional rights of freedom and independence by daring to exercise them." Chapter 39, pg. 415

Quote 24: "We've got your pal, buddy. We've got your pal." Chapter 41, pg. 446

Quote 25: "Run away to Sweden, Yossarian. And I'll stay here and persevere. Yes. I'll persevere. I'll nag and badger Colonel Cathcart and Colonel Korn every time I see them. I'm not afraid." Chapter 42, pg. 461

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