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How to Stop Living and Start Worrying: Conversations with Carl Cederstrm 1st Edition

1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0745650395
ISBN-10: 0745650392
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Editorial Reviews


"An entertaining set of conversations with a bright star of philosophy."
Boyd Tonkin, The Independent

"The pages are stuffed with reminiscence and intriguing passing ideas as well as more arguments (of greater or lesser plausability) than most books twice the length. The intellectual register soars and plunges in a pleasing rhythm."
Steven Poole, The Guardian

"Apart from his charming autobiography, Critchley is remarkably adept at clearly explaining quite difficult ideas."
Nina Power, Philosophers' Magazine

"Carl Cederstrom's book of interviews with Simon Critchley, reminded me that I was not the only tinnitus-blighted Scouser to be fighting the good fight for 'Continental' philosophy!"
Mark Thwaite, Ready Steady Book

"An indispensable resource to anyone interested in Critchley's writing."
A Piece of Monologue 

"After reading this book, I was, I must admit, sorely tempted to answer Camus's famous question in the affirmative."
David Shields, author of Reality Hunger

From the Back Cover

The question of how to lead a happy and meaningful life has been at the heart of philosophical debate since time immemorial. Today, however, these questions seem to be addressed not by philosophers but self-help gurus, who frantically champion the individual's quest for self-expression and self-realization; the desire to become authentic.

Against these new age sophistries, How to Stop Living and Start Worrying tackles the question of 'how to live' by forcing us to explore our troubling relationship with death. For Critchley, philosophy begins with the question of finitude and with his understanding of a key classical theme - that to philosophize is to learn how to die. Learning how to accept both our own and others' mortality as a part of life also raises the question of how to love. Critchley argues that the act of love requires us to give up something of ourselves, to lose control so as to be open to the demands of love. We will never be equal to this demand and so we are brought face to face with our own limitations - one form of which is what Critchley calls our 'originary inauthenticity'. By scrutinizing the very nature of humour, Critchley explores what we need to laugh at ourselves and presents the need to confront the inescapable ridiculousness of life.

Reflecting on the work of over 20 years, this book provides a unique, witty and erudite introduction to the thought of Simon Critchley. It includes a revealing biographical conversation with Critchley and a fascinating debate with the critically acclaimed novelist Tom McCarthy about the nature of authenticity. Taken together the conversations give an intimate portrait of one of the most lucid, provocative and engaging philosophers writing today.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Polity; 1 edition (October 11, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745650392
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745650395
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #838,987 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Victoria on November 11, 2014
Format: Paperback
An intelligent and hilarious satire on the many "how to...self-help" books out there. Simon Critchley reminds us that we don't need any stinking how to books and the human experience is, in fact, as nuts as we think it is.
Speaking of love, relationships, and death; he states his views using uncanny wit and the wisdom of many famed philosophers before him. A must read for any one interested in philosophy or any one interested in the humor of being human.
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