Subjects Freshman Year Reading African American Studies African Studies American Studies Anthropology Art, Film, Music and Architecture Asian Studies Business and Economics Criminology Education Environmental Studies Foreign Language Instructional Materials Gender Studies History Irish Studies Jewish Studies Latin American & Caribbean Studies Law and Legal Studies Literature and Drama Literature in Spanish Media Issues, Journalism and Communication Middle East Studies Native American Studies Philosophy Political Science Psychology Reference Religion Russian and Eastern European Studies Science and Mathematics Sociology Study Aids


E-Newsletters: Click here to be notified of new titles in your field
Click here to request Desk/Exam copies
Freshman Year Reading
View Our Award Winners
Click here to view our Catalogs
The Happy Life

The Happy Life

Upgrade to the Flash 9 viewer for enhanced content, including the ability to browse & search through your favorite titles.
Click here to learn more!

Order Exam Copy
E-Mail this Page Print this Page
Add This - The Happy Life

Written by David MaloufAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by David Malouf

  • Format: Hardcover, 112 pages
  •  
  • Publisher: Pantheon
  • On Sale: January 8, 2013
  • Price: $19.95
  • ISBN: 978-0-307-90771-4 (0-307-90771-6)
Also available as an eBook.
about this book

By Australia’s greatest contemporary author, an elegant, succinct meditation on what makes for a happy life.

“Happiness surely is among the simplest of human emotions and the most spontaneous,” says David Malouf. But what exactly are we looking for when we chase happiness? At this particular moment in history, privileged, industrialized nations have lessened much of what makes us unhappy: widespread poverty, illness, famine. Yet we are still unfulfilled, turning increasingly to yoga, church, Match.com, drugs, clinical therapy and retail therapy. What is at the root of our collective stress, and how can we find our way to contentment?

Drawing on mythology, philosophy, art and literature, Malouf traces our conception of happiness throughout history, distilling centuries of thought into a lucid narrative. He discusses the creation myths of ancient Greece and the philosophical schools of Athens, analyzes Thomas Jefferson’s revolutionary declaration that “the pursuit of happiness” is a right, explores the celebration of sensual delight in Rembrandt and Rubens and offers a perceptive take on a modern society growing larger and more impersonal.

With wisdom and insight, Malouf investigates that simplest, most spontaneous of feelings and urges us to do the same.

“A penetrating meditation on happiness. . . . Malouf eloquently weighs the appeal of material goods and well-being against the heft or morality and individual longing for something we can’t always articulate.” —Booklist

“Engaging. . . . A slim volume of meditations on the conundrum that is happiness.” —Kirkus Review