Top 10 Aziz Ansari Quotes: “Do The Industry A Solid And Give Minorities A Second Look”

Aziz Ansari, a son of immigrants from India, refuses to do an Indian accent. His work tackles issues of race, gender politics, and love in the modern world, and he is reinventing the sitcom with his hit Netflix show Master of None. The actor, comedian, writer, producer, and director, is a multi-talented modern man, outspoken about what he believes is right, and communicates his perspective in ways that are relatable, entertaining, authentic, and enlightening.

Strong beliefs keep Ansari, born and raised in Columbia, South Carolina from doing a fake accent. The LA Times reports that he refuses to do accents because he believes they perpetuate stereotypes. He writes that despite his success, “Even though I’ve sold out Madison Square Garden as a stand-up comedian and have appeared in several films and a TV series, when my phone rings, the roles I’m offered are often defined by ethnicity and often require accents.” He admits that while positive change is happening, there needs to be much more onscreen diversity. His breakout role was playing Tom Haverford in the workplace sitcom Parks and Recreation. “Without that opportunity, we wouldn’t have developed the experience necessary to tell our stories,” he says of being cast on Parks and Recreation, and urges producers to, “do the industry a solid and give minorities a second look.”

On Master of None, Ansari through his character Dev and his diverse friendships tackles important issues, like race, cultural and economic divides, sexual harassment, the influence of technology on millennial dating and relationships, and the struggle to find oneself both at work, and at home. The second season digs deeper and is cinematic in scope as it follows Dev to Italy. A Thanksgiving holiday episode depicts his relationship with his friend Denise and her struggle to be accepted as gay by multiple generations of women in her black family. Salon describes the show as a, “communal representation dealing a blow to self-representation.”

A self-proclaimed feminist, Ansari is the author of Modern Romance, a book Guardian describes as trying, “to decipher how love, sex and romance have become thrillingly liberated, yet also complicated and distorted by modern times and changing technology.”

Even though he has said that our most intimate relationship is with our cellphones, he is not jaded or cynical about romance. He says of apps and online dating, “I mean, sometimes it doesn’t go well. But there are so many people it’s helped. If you look at it one way, it’s creating all this love in the world that wouldn’t be created otherwise.”

Comedy is an important tool for critiquing our society, and Ansari takes his influence seriously. He won praise for his blistering take down of Donald Trump in a Saturday Night Live monologue the day after a contentious presidential inauguration. Ansari, who was raised Muslim, told New York Magazine, “You’ve got to accept, ‘Okay, I’m in this position, I have to be somewhat responsible. ‘Well, I’m going to keep that Islamophobia thing in because no one else can really talk about that.’ ”

Aziz Ansari’s work is provocative, thoughtful, and entertaining, and he has become an important voice in popular culture. To inspire our own journey to create meaningful, important, and accessible work, here are 10 quotations from Aziz Ansari.



“I was 18 when I started. I was hanging out with some friends and they asked if I had tried stand-up before. I hadn’t but I thought: ‘what the hell?’ So I went to an open mic night, and I liked it”. —Aziz Ansari


“Here’s a game to play: When you look at posters for movies or TV shows, see if it makes sense to switch the title to “What’s Gonna Happen to This White Guy?” or if there’s a woman in the poster, too, “Are These White People Gonna Have Sex With Each Other?” Even at a time when minorities account for almost 40 percent of the American population, when Hollywood wants an “everyman,” what it really wants is a straight white guy. But a straight white guy is not every man. The “everyman” is everybody.” —Aziz Ansari



“No matter how many options we have, the real challenge is figuring out how to evaluate them.” ― Aziz Ansari



“There are no longer any predetermined life paths. Each of us is on our own.” ― Aziz Ansari



“Spend more time with people, less time in front of a screen, and—since we’re all in it together—be nice to people.” ― Aziz Ansari



“Hate crimes and stuff are on the rise. You know, as far as people in my own skin tone, brown people. I think part of the problem is a lot of these people, they just haven’t interacted with any brown people in their normal life. The only people they see are these monsters in the news who are just a drop in the ocean.” ― Aziz Ansari



“I’m an optimist – I feel like an amazing part of life is that at any moment.” ― Aziz Ansari



“You can dream about awards but I dream the smart way: I just hope the show is really good and that people I respect really like it. If you dream in that way, everything else falls into place. – Aziz Ansari



“I don’t have any fear of being whitewashed because to get really exciting stuff, you usually have to write it yourself.” —Aziz Ansari



“I feel like if you do believe that – if you believe men and women have equal rights – if someone asks you if you’re a feminist you have to say yes. Because that is how words work.” —Aziz Ansari

Author Bio: Tara Collum

Tara Collum lives in Toronto and grew up in Muskoka. She is the volunteer social media coordinator for the Death Row Support Project @COB_DRSP and co-writes a web serial at She is all about tea, books, mumblecore, music, long walks, and self-improvement. Follow Tara on twitter @99percentsun