cover image How Should We Live? Great Ideas from the Past for Everyday Life

How Should We Live? Great Ideas from the Past for Everyday Life

Roman Krznaric. BlueBridge (IPG, dist.), $22.95 (320p) ISBN 978-1933346847

The question of how we should live has been a perennial challenge for thinkers across millennia. British “lifestyle philosopher” Krznaric (How to Find Fulfilling Work) argues that the secret to understanding our lives today is to look at examples from history. His work spans from Ancient Greece (with thoughts on love by Aristotle) to the Industrial Revolution (Henry Ford and mass production) to the consumerism of the present day and the creation of companies like Coca-Cola in order to showcase the thoughts of great men and women as well as the collective insights of distinct cultures. Rich with examples, the book is divided into four sections, each one covering a different big topic: “Nurturing Relationships,” “Making a Living,” “Discovering the World,” and “Breaking Conventions.” The text jumps around in both time and location throughout the sub-headings, however, and the result is a lack of depth while addressing each of the individual subjects. Krznaric has simply tried to cover too much, which is a pity, as his observations lead to what could have been more interesting and engaging discussions of each topic. The book as it stands is more suitable for a general-interest reader or those looking for a basic introduction to self-help or philosophy. (Jan.)