Man's Search for Meaning is like nothing you've ever read before. The first half of the book depicts Dr. Frankl's four years losing everything in concentration camps — a description so hellish, it leaves you desolate. Shattered by his Holocaust experiences, Frankl struggles to survive after he is freed. In the second half of the book, Frankl shows how that period of his life informs and develops his theory of "logotherapy" — he asserts that life is about finding meaning, what is meaningful to each individual. As excruciating as his experiences are, Frankl's theory is full of love; he is able to find redemption for himself and others. This book is beautifully life-changing. Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
When Beacon Press first published Man's Search for Meaning in 1959, Carl Rogers called it "one of the outstanding contributions to psychological thought in the last fifty years." In the thirty-three years since then, this book at once a memoir, a self-help book, and a psychology manual has become a classic that has sold more than three million copies in English language editions. Man's Search for Meaning tells the chilling and inspirational story of eminent psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, who was imprisoned at Auschwitz and other concentration camps for three years during the Second World War. Immersed in great suffering and loss, Frankl began to wonder why some of his fellow prisoners were able not only to survive the horrifying conditions, but to grow in the process. Frankl's conclusion that the most basic human motivation is the will to meaning became the basis of his groundbreaking psychological theory, logotherapy. As Nietzsche put it, "He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how." In Man's Search for Meaning, Frankl outlines the principles of logotherapy, and offers ways to help each one of us focus on finding the purpose in our lives. This new edition of Man's Search for Meaning includes a new preface by the author, in which he explains his decision to remain in his native Austria during the Nazi invasion, a choice which eventually led to his imprisonment. It also includes an updated bibliography of books, articles, records, films, videotapes, and audio tapes about logotherapy.
"Frankl is a professional who possesses the rare ability to write in a laymans language." Gerald F. Kreyche, DePaul University
"An enduring work of survival literature." New York Times
"If you read but one book this year, Dr. Frankls book should be that one." Los Angeles Times
"Perhaps the most significant thinking since Freud and Adler." The American Journal of Psychiatry
Internationally renowned psychiatrist Viktor E. Frankl endured years of unspeakable horror in Nazi death camps. During, and partly because of, his suffering, Dr. Frankl developed a revolutionary approach to psychotherapy known as logotherapy. At the core of his theory is the belief that man's primary motivational force is his search for meaning.
Cited in Dr. Frankl's New York Times obituary in 1997 as "an enduring work of survival literature," Man's Search for Meaning is more than the story of Viktor E. Frankl's triumph: it is a remarkable blend of science and humanism and "an introduction to the most significant psychological movement of our day" (Gordon W. Allport).
About the Author
Viktor E. Frankl is Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Vienna Medical School and Distinguished Professor of Logotherapy at the U.S. International University. He is the founder of what has come to be called the Third Viennese School of Psychotherapy (after Freud's psychoanalysis and Adler's individual psychology) -- the school of logotherapy.
Born in 1905, Dr. Frankl received the degrees of Doctor of Medicine and Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Vienna. During World War II he spent three years at Auschwitz, Dachau and other concentration camps.
Dr. Frankl first published in 1924 in the International Journal of Psychoanalysis and has since published twenty-six books, which have been translated into nineteen languages, including Japanese and Chinese. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard, Duquesne and Southern Methodist Universities. Honorary Degrees have been conferred upon him by Loyola University in Chicago, Edgecliff College, Rockford College and Mount Mary College, as well as by universities in Brazil and Venezuela. He has been a guest lecturer at universities throughout the world and has made fifty-one lecture tours throughout the United States alone. He is President of the Austrian Medical Society of Psychotherapy.
Table of Contents
Experiences in a concentration camp -- Logotherapy in a nutshell -- Postscript 1984. The case for a tragic optimism.