Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Lester Pearson, fully Lester Bowles "Mike" Pearson

Canadian Prime Minister, Professor, Historian, Civil Servant, Statesman, Diplomat and Politician, Winner of Nobel Peace Prize

"The grim fact is that we prepare for war like precocious giants and for peace like retarded pygmies."

"A great gulf, however, has been opened between man's material advance and his social and moral progress, a gulf in which he may one day be lost if it is not closed or narrowed."

"It would be especially tragic if the people who most cherish ideals of peace, who are most anxious for political cooperation on a wider than national scale, made the mistake of underestimating the pace of economic change in our modern world."

"The scientific and technological discoveries that have made war so infinitely more terrible for us are part of the same process that has knit us all so much more closely together."

"We know now that in modern warfare, fought on any considerable scale, there can be no possible economic gain for any side. Win or lose, there is nothing but waste and destruction."

"The choice, however, is as clear now for nations as it was once for the individual: peace or extinction."

"We must keep on trying to solve problems, one by one, stage by stage, if not on the basis of confidence and cooperation, at least on that of mutual toleration and self-interest."

"The only failures are those who fail to try."