Search Results: how-proust-can-change-your-life

How Proust Can Change Your Life

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307833496

Category: Humor

Page: 208

View: 705

Alain de Botton combines two unlikely genres--literary biography and self-help manual--in the hilarious and unexpectedly practical How Proust Can Change Your Life. Who would have thought that Marcel Proust, one of the most important writers of our century, could provide us with such a rich source of insight into how best to live life? Proust understood that the essence and value of life was the sum of its everyday parts. As relevant today as they were at the turn of the century, Proust's life and work are transformed here into a no-nonsense guide to, among other things, enjoying your vacation, reviving a relationship, achieving original and unclichéd articulation, being a good host, recognizing love, and understanding why you should never sleep with someone on a first date. It took de Botton to find the inspirational in Proust's essays, letters and fiction and, perhaps even more surprising, to draw out a vivid and clarifying portrait of the master from between the lines of his work. Here is Proust as we have never seen or read him before: witty, intelligent, pragmatic. He might well change your life.

How Proust Can Change Your Life

Author: Alain de Botton

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

ISBN: 1447222199

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 224

View: 7121

‘What a marvellous book this is . . . de Botton dissects what [Proust] had to say about friendship, reading, looking carefully, paying attention taking your time, being alive and adds his own delicious commentary. The result is an intoxicating as it is wise, amusing as well as stimulating, and presented in so fresh a fashion as to be unique . . . I could not stop, and now much start all over again.’ Brian Masters, Mail on Sunday ‘De Botton not only has a complete understanding of Proust’s life . . . but what is particularly charming about this small, readable book is its tongue-in-cheek benignity, its lightly held erudition and its generous way of lending itself to what is not only the greatest book of the century but also the darkest and the most eccentric’ Edmund White, Observer ‘It contains more human interest and play of fancy than most fiction . . . de Botton, in emphasizing Proust’s healing, advisory aspects, does us the service of rereading him on our behalf, providing of that vast sacred lake a sweet and lucid distillation.’ John Updike, New Yorker ‘De Botton’s little book is so charming, amusing and sensible that it may even itself change your life.’ Allan Massie, Daily Telegraph ‘This engaging book is one of the most entertaining pieces of literary criticism I have read in a long while.’ Sunday Telegraph ‘A very enjoyable book’ Sebastian Faulks

How Proust Can Change Your Life

Not a Novel

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Pantheon

ISBN: N.A

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 199

View: 8577

Presents a study of Marcel Proust that combines elements of literary biography, textual analysis, and self-help manual as it examines the French writer's thoughts on true love, vacations, dating, and other issues

How to Take Your Time

from How Proust Can Change Your Life

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0525435026

Category: Humor

Page: 16

View: 5231

Curiously practical—this no-nonsense blend of literary biography and self-help unravels how interesting life can be if only you could resist the impulse to rush through the mundane rituals of modern life. Every morning, Marcel Proust sipped his two cups of strong coffee with milk, ate a croissant from one boulangerie, dunking it in his coffee as he slowly read the day’s paper with great care—poring over each headline and section. Only Alain de Botton could have pulled so many useful insights from the oeuvre of one the world’s greatest literary masters. Fascinating and vital, How to Take Your Time will urge you to find the wisdom in defying “the self-satisfaction felt by ‘busy’ men—however idiotic their business—at ‘not having time’ to do what you are doing.” A Vintage Shorts Wellness selection. An ebook short.

How to Think More About Sex

Author: Alain de Botton

Publisher: Picador

ISBN: 1250030668

Category: Psychology

Page: 192

View: 4253

THE SCHOOL OF LIFE IS DEDICATED TO EXPLORING LIFE'S BIG QUESTIONS IN HIGHLY-PORTABLE PAPERBACKS, FEATURING FRENCH FLAPS AND DECKLE EDGES, THAT THE NEW YORK TIMES CALLS "DAMNABLY CUTE." WE DON'T HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS, BUT WE WILL DIRECT YOU TOWARDS A VARIETY OF USEFUL IDEAS THAT ARE GUARANTEED TO STIMULATE, PROVOKE, AND CONSOLE. We don't think too much about sex; we're merely thinking about it in the wrong way. So asserts Alain de Botton in How to Think More About Sex, a rigorous and supremely honest book designed to help us navigate the intimate and exciting---yet often confusing and difficult---experience that is sex. Few of us tend to feel we're entirely normal when it comes to sex, and what we're supposed to be feeling rarely matches up with the reality. This book argues that twenty-first-century sex is ultimately fated to be a balancing act between love and desire, and adventure and commitment. Covering topics that include lust, fetishism, adultery, and pornography, Alain de Botton frankly articulates the dilemmas of modern sexuality, offering insights and consolation to help us think more deeply and wisely about the sex we are, or aren't, having.

The Consolations of Philosophy

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 030783350X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 272

View: 2940

From the author of How Proust Can Change Your Life, a delightful, truly consoling work that proves that philosophy can be a supreme source of help for our most painful everyday problems. Perhaps only Alain de Botton could uncover practical wisdom in the writings of some of the greatest thinkers of all time. But uncover he does, and the result is an unexpected book of both solace and humor. Dividing his work into six sections -- each highlighting a different psychic ailment and the appropriate philosopher -- de Botton offers consolation for unpopularity from Socrates, for not having enough money from Epicurus, for frustration from Seneca, for inadequacy from Montaigne, and for a broken heart from Schopenhauer (the darkest of thinkers and yet, paradoxically, the most cheering). Consolation for envy -- and, of course, the final word on consolation -- comes from Nietzsche: "Not everything which makes us feel better is good for us." This wonderfully engaging book will, however, make us feel better in a good way, with equal measures of wit and wisdom.

The Architecture of Happiness

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

ISBN: 1551993872

Category: Philosophy

Page: 288

View: 5959

Bestselling author Alain de Botton considers how our private homes and public edifices influence how we feel, and how we could build dwellings in which we would stand a better chance of happiness. In this witty, erudite look at how we shape, and are shaped by, our surroundings, Alain de Botton applies Stendhal’s motto that “Beauty is the promise of happiness” to the spaces we inhabit daily. Why should we pay attention to what architecture has to say to us? de Botton asks provocatively. With his trademark lucidity and humour, de Botton traces how human needs and desires have been served by styles of architecture, from stately Classical to minimalist Modern, arguing that the stylistic choices of a society can represent both its cherished ideals and the qualities it desperately lacks. On an individual level, de Botton has deep sympathy for our need to see our selves reflected in our surroundings; he demonstrates with great wisdom how buildings — just like friends — can serve as guardians of our identity. Worrying about the shape of our sofa or the colour of our walls might seem self-indulgent, but de Botton considers the hopes and fears we have for our homes at a new level of depth and insight. When shopping for furniture or remodelling the kitchen, we don’t just consider functionality but also the major questions of aesthetics and the philosophy of art: What is beauty? Can beautiful surroundings make us good? Can beauty bring happiness? The buildings we find beautiful, de Botton concludes, are those that represent our ideas of a meaningful life. The Architecture of Happiness marks a return to what Alain does best — taking on a subject whose allure is at once tantalizing and a little forbidding and offering to readers a completely beguiling and original exploration of the subject. As he did with Proust, philosophy, and travel, now he does with architecture. From the Hardcover edition.

Status Anxiety

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307491331

Category: Philosophy

Page: 320

View: 2124

Anyone who’s ever lost sleep over an unreturned phone call or the neighbor’s Lexus had better read Alain de Botton’s irresistibly clear-headed new book, immediately. For in its pages, a master explicator of our civilization and its discontents turns his attention to the insatiable quest for status, a quest that has less to do with material comfort than with love. To demonstrate his thesis, de Botton ranges through Western history and thought from St. Augustine to Andrew Carnegie and Machiavelli to Anthony Robbins. Whether it’s assessing the class-consciousness of Christianity or the convulsions of consumer capitalism, dueling or home-furnishing, Status Anxiety is infallibly entertaining. And when it examines the virtues of informed misanthropy, art appreciation, or walking a lobster on a leash, it is not only wise but helpful. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Religion for Atheists

A Non-believer's Guide to the Uses of Religion

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307907104

Category: Philosophy

Page: 320

View: 8180

What if religions are neither all true nor all nonsense? The long-running and often boring debate between fundamentalist believers and non-believers is finally moved forward by Alain de Botton’s inspiring new book, which boldly argues that the supernatural claims of religion are entirely false—but that it still has some very important things to teach the secular world. Religion for Atheists suggests that rather than mocking religion, agnostics and atheists should instead steal from it—because the world’s religions are packed with good ideas on how we might live and arrange our societies. Blending deep respect with total impiety, de Botton (a non-believer himself) proposes that we look to religion for insights into how to, among other concerns, build a sense of community, make our relationships last, overcome feelings of envy and inadequacy, inspire travel and reconnect with the natural world. For too long non-believers have faced a stark choice between either swallowing some peculiar doctrines or doing away with a range of consoling and beautiful rituals and ideas. At last, in Religion for Atheists, Alain de Botton has fashioned a far more interesting and truly helpful alternative.

The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Emblem Editions

ISBN: 0771026323

Category: Philosophy

Page: 336

View: 4008

From the international bestselling author of The Architecture of Happiness and How Proust Can Change Your Life comes this lyrical, erudite look at our world of work. We spend most of our time at work, but what we do there rarely gets discussed in the sort of lyrical and descriptive prose our efforts surely deserve. Determined to correct this lapse, armed with a poetic perspective and his trademark philosophical sharpness, Alain de Botton heads out into the world of offices and factories, ready to take in the beauty, interest, and sheer strangeness of the modern workplace. De Botton spends time in and around some less familiar work environments, including warehouses, container ports, rocket launch pads, and power stations, and follows scientists, landscape painters, accountants, cookie manufacturers, therapists, entrepreneurs, and aircraft salesmen as they do their jobs. Along the way, de Botton tries to answer some of the most urgent questions we can pose about work: Why do we do it? What makes it pleasurable? What is its meaning? To what end do we daily exhaust not only ourselves but also our planet? Equally intrigued by work’s pleasures and its pains, Alain de Botton offers a characteristically lucid and witty tour of the working day and night, in a book sure to inspire a range of life-changing and wise thoughts. From the Hardcover edition.

The News: A User's Manual

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307911721

Category: Social Science

Page: 272

View: 5736

The news is everywhere. We can’t stop constantly checking it on our computer screens, but what is this doing to our minds? We are never really taught how to make sense of the torrent of news we face every day, writes Alain de Botton (author of the best-selling The Architecture of Happiness), but this has a huge impact on our sense of what matters and of how we should lead our lives. In his dazzling new book, de Botton takes twenty-five archetypal news stories—including an airplane crash, a murder, a celebrity interview and a political scandal—and submits them to unusually intense analysis with a view to helping us navigate our news-soaked age. He raises such questions as Why are disaster stories often so uplifting? What makes the love lives of celebrities so interesting? Why do we enjoy watching politicians being brought down? Why are upheavals in far-off lands often so boring? In The News: A User’s Manual, de Botton has written the ultimate guide for our frenzied era, certain to bring calm, understanding and a measure of sanity to our daily (perhaps even hourly) interactions with the news machine. (With black-and-white illustrations throughout.) From the Hardcover edition.

The Course of Love

A Novel

Author: Alain de Botton

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 1501134434

Category: Fiction

Page: 240

View: 3319

“An engrossing tale [that] provides plenty of food for thought” (People, Best New Books pick), this playful, wise, and profoundly moving second novel from the internationally bestselling author of How Proust Can Change Your Life tracks the beautifully complicated arc of a romantic partnership. We all know the headiness and excitement of the early days of love. But what comes after? In Edinburgh, a couple, Rabih and Kirsten, fall in love. They get married, they have children—but no long-term relationship is as simple as “happily ever after.” The Course of Love explores what happens after the birth of love, what it takes to maintain, and what happens to our original ideals under the pressures of an average existence. We see, along with Rabih and Kirsten, the first flush of infatuation, the effortlessness of falling into romantic love, and the course of life thereafter. Interwoven with their story and its challenges is an overlay of philosophy—an annotation and a guide to what we are reading. As The New York Times says, “The Course of Love is a return to the form that made Mr. de Botton’s name in the mid-1990s….love is the subject best suited to his obsessive aphorizing, and in this novel he again shows off his ability to pin our hopes, methods, and insecurities to the page.” This is a Romantic novel in the true sense, one interested in exploring how love can survive and thrive in the long term. The result is a sensory experience—fictional, philosophical, psychological—that urges us to identify deeply with these characters and to reflect on his and her own experiences in love. Fresh, visceral, and utterly compelling, The Course of Love is a provocative and life-affirming novel for everyone who believes in love. “There’s no writer alive like de Botton, and his latest ambitious undertaking is as enlightening and humanizing as his previous works” (Chicago Tribune).

Essays in Love

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Picador

ISBN: 9781447275329

Category: Love

Page: 224

View: 7334

Perhaps it is true that we do not really exist until there is someone there to see us existing, we cannot properly speak until there is someone who can understand what we are saying in essence, we are not wholly alive until we are loved.A man and a woman meet over casual conversation on a flight from Paris to London, and so begins a love story - from first kiss to first argument, elation to heartbreak, and everything in between. Each stage of the relationship is illuminated with startling clarity, as de Botton explores emotions often felt but rarely understood.With the verve of a novelist and the insight of a philosopher, Alain de Botton uncovers the mysteries of the human heart. Essays In Love is an iconic book - one that should be read by anyone who has ever fallen in love.PRAISE FOR ALAIN DE BOTTON'The book's success has much to do with its beautifully modelled sentences, its wry humour and its unwavering deadpan respect for its reader's intelligence . . . full of keen observation and flashes of genuine lyricism, acuity and depth.' Francine Prose, New Republic 'Witty, funny, sophisticated, neatly tied up, and full of wise and illuminating insights.' P. J. Kavanagh, Spectator 'De Botton is a national treasure.' Susan Hill 'I doubt if de Botton has written a dull sentence in his life.' Jan Morris, New Statesman 'Single-handedly, de Botton has taken philosophy back to its simplest and most important purpose: helping us to live our lives.' Independent

Kiss & Tell

Author: Alain de Botton

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 9780312155612

Category: Fiction

Page: 257

View: 1177

Accused by a former girlfriend of being unable to emphathize, the narrator decides to write about the next person who walks into his life, Isabel Rogers

The Art of Travel

Author: Alain De Botton

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307481662

Category: Philosophy

Page: 272

View: 1526

Any Baedeker will tell us where we ought to travel, but only Alain de Botton will tell us how and why. With the same intelligence and insouciant charm he brought to How Proust Can Save Your Life, de Botton considers the pleasures of anticipation; the allure of the exotic, and the value of noticing everything from a seascape in Barbados to the takeoffs at Heathrow. Even as de Botton takes the reader along on his own peregrinations, he also cites such distinguished fellow-travelers as Baudelaire, Wordsworth, Van Gogh, the biologist Alexander von Humboldt, and the 18th-century eccentric Xavier de Maistre, who catalogued the wonders of his bedroom. The Art of Travel is a wise and utterly original book. Don’t leave home without it. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Perfect Storm: A True Story of Men Against the Sea

Author: Sebastian Junger

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393337014

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 233

View: 9334

A real-life thriller that leaves us with the taste of salt on our tongues and a terror of the deep.

How to Hepburn

Lessons on Living from Kate the Great

Author: Karen Karbo

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 9781596919808

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 208

View: 8858

How to Hepburn, Karen Karbo's sleek, contemporary reassessment of one of America's greatest icons, takes us on a spin through the great Kate's long, eventful life, with an aim toward seeing what we can glean from the First Lady of Cinema. One part How Proust Can Change Your Life and one part Why Sinatra Matters, How to Hepburn teases some unexpected lessons from the life of a woman whose freewheeling, pants-wearing determination redefined the image of the independent woman while eventually endearing her to the world. This witty, provocative gem is full of no-nonsense Hepburn-style commentary on subjects such as: making denial work for you; the importance of being brash, facing fear, and always having an aviator in your life; learning why and how to lie; the benefits of discretion; making the most of a dysfunctional relationship; and the power of forgiving your parents. Thrilling fans of the notoriously independent actress, award-winner Karen Karbo presents a gusty guidebook to harnessing your inner Hepburn, and living life on your own terms.

How to Live

Or A Life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer

Author: Sarah Bakewell

Publisher: Other Press, LLC

ISBN: 1590514262

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 400

View: 883

Winner of the 2010 National Book Critics Circle Award for Biography How to get along with people, how to deal with violence, how to adjust to losing someone you love—such questions arise in most people’s lives. They are all versions of a bigger question: how do you live? How do you do the good or honorable thing, while flourishing and feeling happy? This question obsessed Renaissance writers, none more than Michel Eyquem de Monatigne, perhaps the first truly modern individual. A nobleman, public official and wine-grower, he wrote free-roaming explorations of his thought and experience, unlike anything written before. He called them “essays,” meaning “attempts” or “tries.” Into them, he put whatever was in his head: his tastes in wine and food, his childhood memories, the way his dog’s ears twitched when it was dreaming, as well as the appalling events of the religious civil wars raging around him. The Essays was an instant bestseller and, over four hundred years later, Montaigne’s honesty and charm still draw people to him. Readers come in search of companionship, wisdom and entertainment—and in search of themselves. This book, a spirited and singular biography, relates the story of his life by way of the questions he posed and the answers he explored. It traces his bizarre upbringing, youthful career and sexual adventures, his travels, and his friendships with the scholar and poet Étienne de La Boétie and with his adopted “daughter,” Marie de Gournay. And we also meet his readers—who for centuries have found in Montaigne an inexhaustible source of answers to the haunting question, “how to live?”

Why Read Moby-Dick?

Author: Nathaniel Philbrick

Publisher: Penguin Books

ISBN: 0143123971

Category: History

Page: 131

View: 8400

The National Book Award-winning author of In the Heart of the Sea shares expert guidelines on how to read and appreciate Herman Melville's classic work, offering insight into its history, characters and themes while explaining its literary relevance in the modern world. 100,000 first printing.

Cassandra Darke

Author: Posy Simmonds

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1409029050

Category: Comics & Graphic Novels

Page: 96

View: 9571

Cassandra Darke is an art dealer, mean, selfish, solitary by nature, living in Chelsea in a house worth £7 million. She has become a social pariah, but doesn’t much care. Between one Christmas and the next, she has sullied the reputation of a West End gallery and has acquired a conviction for fraud, a suspended sentence and a bank balance drained by lawsuits. On the scale of villainy, fraud seems to Cassandra a rather paltry offence – her own crime involving ‘no violence, no weapon, no dead body’. But in Cassandra’s basement, her young ex-lodger, Nicki, has left a surprise, something which implies at least violence and probably a body . . . Something which forces Cassandra out of her rich enclave and onto the streets. Not those local streets paved with gold and lit with festive glitter, but grimmer, darker places, where she must make the choice between self-sacrifice and running for her life.

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