The difference between Barack Obama and Donald Trump in two quotes


They might have a job in common on their CVs now, but Donald Trump and Barack Obama are worlds apart in pretty much everything else.

We've drawn comparisons between the two in pictures and in video, but now there's another comparison to make. A literary one.

Alan Rappeport, a reporter at the New York Times, tweeted a quote from each of the men talking about books.

Obama said that Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison gave him perspective, and “is a book I think of when I imagine people going through hardship. That it’s not just pain, but there's joy and glory and mystery”.

He added that he always thinks about this line from Bend in the River, by V.S. Naipaul:

The world is what it is; men who are nothing, who allow themselves to become nothing, have no place in it.

Obama said he thinks about Naipaul’s novels when “thinking about the hardness of the world".

Shall we move on to what Trump has to say about the literature that’s shaped his worldview?

I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started. Every time I do about half a page, I get a phone call that there’s some emergency, this or that.


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