You know that moment in a book when you realize where its title came from? Sometimes it’s just a catch-all theme. Sometimes it emerges as an idea. Sometimes it’s an actual line in the book. For some reason, I always find this moment exciting. It makes me giddy. I will often mark it with one of my ever-present Post-Its, just so I can come back and relive the moment later. That’s how much I love it. Continue reading
I know what you’re thinking. “More? How could I possibly think more?”
But Alain de Botton’s How to Think More About Sex explores a qualitative more rather than a quantitative one. A philosophical quandary rather than a sensual meandering. In short, he explores ideas on how to think about it generally (he uses the catchy term “sex,” but it applies to all aspects of romance, relationships, and love), but does not share specific spicy episodes.
****DISCLAIMER- It hopefully goes without saying, but I don’t necessarily agree with the vast majority of his ideas. But I found them interesting nevertheless.**** Continue reading
For some reason, the first several times I read the title of Alain de Botton’s Status Anxiety, I did so with a decidedly American/Hollywood inflection, like the title of a horror or sci-fi film, to indicate a state of heightened anxiousness or frenzy. But this was not de Botton’s intention. “Status anxiety” represents a state of anxiousness about status. That is, how we feel about how we fit in in society, how we are perceived, where we fall on the haves vs. have nots continuum, and whether we are a “success.” Continue reading
I am in love with On Love by Alain de Botton. This is de Botton’s first novel, and it may be my new favorite (I make no secret of the fact that I love everything that he writes. Every time I read one of his books, in fact, it becomes my new favorite. I don’t know if that is because I am serendipitously reading his books in order of increasing greatness, or I love all his books equally, and my love for the most recently completed book simply has the most pressing position in my consciousness). Continue reading
The Consolations of Philosophy was, for me, a fascinating re-introduction to everything I love about philosophy. In the book, Alain de Botton summarizes the ideologies of 6 great philosophers (Socrates, Epicurus, Seneca, Montaigne, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche) as they apply to modern-day issues: love, popularity, shyness, wealth, and so on.
But it’s much more exciting than that inadequate description makes it sound. Continue reading