The Wonderbox: Curious Histories of How to Live

Roman Krnaric

The Wonderbox: Curious Histories of How to Live

There are many ways to try to improve our lives - we can turn to the wisdom of philosophers, the teachings of religions or the latest experiments of psychologists. But we rarely to look to history for inspiration - and when we do it can be surprisingly powerful. Showing the lessons that can be learned from the past, cultural historian Roman Krznaric explores twelve universal topics, from work and love to money and creativity, and reveals the wisdom that we've been missing. 3.4 out of 5 based on 4 reviews
The Wonderbox: Curious Histories of How to Live

Omniscore:

Classification Non-fiction
Genre Society, Politics & Philsophy, Religion & Spirituality, Essays, Journals & Letters
Format Hardback
Pages 368
RRP £14.99
Date of Publication December 2011
ISBN 978-1846683930
Publisher Profile
 

There are many ways to try to improve our lives - we can turn to the wisdom of philosophers, the teachings of religions or the latest experiments of psychologists. But we rarely to look to history for inspiration - and when we do it can be surprisingly powerful. Showing the lessons that can be learned from the past, cultural historian Roman Krznaric explores twelve universal topics, from work and love to money and creativity, and reveals the wisdom that we've been missing.

Are you hooked on gadgets? Then it's time you went on a digital diet | Roman Krznaric | Independent

Reviews

The Financial Times

Carl Wilkinson

… a fascinating rattlebag of intelligent, stimulating essays … Krznaric is a faculty member at Alain de Botton’s School of Life and The Wonderbox is very much in the mould of the latter’s bestsellers: densely researched but readable, wise and witty.

06/01/2012

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The Times

Iain Finlayson

This modern guide to living a good life by nurturing relationships, giving more to others, and resisting the self-imposed tyrannies of work, time, ambition and achievement, is entertaining and instructive.

14/01/2012

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The Guardian

Sam Leith

... a benign addition to the genre of upmarket self-help books ... At the spine of his book, intellectually, is the project of exposing the way culture passes for nature. Hooray for that. Where he fails, though, is to historicise his own prejudices. He at no point really explains the criteria by which this example from history should be understood as the compelling one rather than that. You could just as easily write a self-help book explaining that the good life is to be found in grotesque orgies of overeating as per the Regency, opium addiction as per Coleridge, ritual sacrifice as per the Mayans, slave ownership as per George Washington, plural marriage as per Abraham or pederasty as per those wise Athenians.

14/01/2012

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The Independent

James Attlee

Perhaps the most interesting section for this reader was "Deathstyle", in which the tendency to hide death away in hospitals is contrasted with the tradition of the Day of the Dead in Mexico and the 15th-century European Danse Macabre.

20/01/2012

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