Please explain to the class the meaning and the significance of the following quotes. Please also make sure you draw our attention to specific passages.
Dada is a new tendency in art. One can tell this from the fact that until now nobody knew anything about it, and tomorrow everyone in Zurich will be talking about it. Dada comes from the dictionary. it is terribly simple. In French it means “hobby horse.” In German it means “good-by,” “Get off my back,” “Be seeing you sometime.” In Romanian: “Yes, indeed, you are right, that’s it. But of course, yes, definitely, right.” And so forth.
An international word. Just a word, and the word a movement. Very easy to understand. Quite terribly simple. To make of it an artistic tendency must mean that one is anticipating complications. Dada psychology, dada Germany cum indigestion and fog paroxysm, dada literature, dada bourgeoisie, and yourselves, honored poets, who are always writing with words but never writing the word itself, who are always writing around the actual point. Dada world war without end, dada revolution without beginning, dada, you friends and also-poets, esteemed sirs, manufacturers, and evangelists. Dada Tzara, dada Huelsenbeck, dada m’dada, dada m’dada dada mhm, dada dere dada, dada Hue, dada Tza.
How does one achieve eternal bliss? By saying dada. How does one become famous? By saying dada. With a noble gesture and delicate propriety. Till one goes crazy. Till one loses consciousness. How can one get rid of everything that smack of journalism, worms, everything nice and right, blinkered, moralistic, europeanized, enervated? By saying dada. Dada is the world soul, dada is the pawnshop. Dada is the world’s best lily-milk soap. Dada Mr. Rubiner, dada Mr. Korrodi. Dada Mr. Anastasius Lilienstein.
In plain language: the hospitality of the Swiss is something to be profoundly appreciated. And in questions of aesthetics the key is quality.
I shall be reading poems that are meant to dispense with conventional language, no less, and to have done with it. Dada Johann Fuschgang Goethe, Dada Stendhal. Dada Dalai Lama, Buddha, Bible and Nietzsche. Dada m’dada. Dada mhm dada da. It’s a question of connections, and of loosening them up a bit to start with. I don’t want words that other people have invented. All the words are other people’s inventions. I want my own stuff, my own rhythm, and vowels and consonants too, matching the rhythm and all my own. If this pulsation in seven yards long, I want words for it that are seven yards long. Mr. Schulz’s words are only two and a half centimeters long.
It will serve to show how articulated language comes into being. I let the vowels fool around. I let the vowels quite simply occur, as a cat miaows… Words emerge, shoulders of words, legs, arms, hands of words. Au, oi, uh. One shouldn’t let too many words out. A line of poetry is a chance to get rid of all the filth that clings to this accursed language, as if put there by stockbrokers’ hands, hands worn smooth by coins. I want the word where it ends and begins. Dada is the heart of words.
Each thing has its word, but the word has become a thing by itself. Why shouldn’t I find it? Why can’t a tree be called Pluplusch, and Pluplubasch when it has been raining? The word, the word, the word outside your domain, your stuffiness, this laughable impotence, your stupendous smugness, outside all the parrotry of your self-evident limitedness. The word, gentlement, is a public concern of the first importance.
DADA is a virgin microbe
DADA is against the high cost of living
DADA limited company for the exploitation of ideas
DADA has 391 different attitudes and colours according to the sex of the president
It changes — affirms — says the opposite at the same time — no importance — shouts — goes fishing.
Dada is the chameleon of rapid and self-interested change.
Dada is against the future. Dada is dead. Dada is absurd. Long live Dada.
Dada is not a literary school, howl.
“In those days we were all Dadaists. If the word meant anything at all, it meant seething discontent, dissatisfaction and cynicism. Defeat and political ferment always give rise to that sort of movement.
We held Dadaist meetings, charged a few marks admission and did nothing but tell people the truth, that is, abuse them. The news spread quickly and soon our meetings were sold out, crammed with people wanting to be scandalized or just after fun.
Between insults we performed ‘art,’ but the performances were as a rule interrupted. Thus hardly would Walter Mehring begin to rattle away at his typewriter while reciting some piece or other of his own composition, when Heartfield or Hausmann would come out from behind the stage and yell: ‘Stop! You’re not trying to bamboozle that feeble-minded lot down there, are you?’ ”
–George Grosz, The Autobiography of George Grosz 
‘What we call Dada is a piece of tomfoolery from the void, in which all the lofty questions have become involved . . .’
‘Dada means nothing. We want to change the world with nothing.’
‘Art is dead. Long live Dada.’
‘Freedom: Dada, Dada, Dada, crying open the constricted pains, swallowing the contrasts and all the contradictions, the grotesqueries and the illogicalities of life.’
‘We do not wish to imitate nature, we do not wish to reproduce. We want to produce. We want to produce the way a plant produces its fruit, not depict. We want to produce directly, not indirectly. Since there is not a trace of abstraction in this art we call it concrete art.’
‘Dada . . . wants over and over again movement: it sees peace only in dynamism.’
‘I wish to blur the firm boundaries which we self-certain people tend to delineate around all we can achieve.’
‘Invest your money in Dada! Dada is the only savings bank that pays interest in the hereafter!’
‘Art has nothing to do with taste. Art is not there to be tasted.’
‘I have forced myself to contradict myself in order to avoid conforming to my own taste.
‘Dada talks with you, it is everything, it includes everything, it belongs to all religions, can be neither victory nor defeat, it lives in space and not in time.’