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
We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead to think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life-daily and hourly. Our answer must consist not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.
When Man's Search for Meaning was first published in 1959, it was hailed by Carl Rogers as "one of the outstanding contributions to psychological thought in the last fifty years." Now, more than forty years and 4 million copies later, this tribute to hope in the face of unimaginable loss has emerged as a true classic. Man's Search for Meaning--at once a memoir, a self-help book, and a psychology manual-is the story of psychiatrist Viktor Frankl's struggle for survival during his three years in Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps. Yet rather than "a tale concerned with the great horrors," Frankl focuses in on the "hard fight for existence" waged by "the great army of unknown and unrecorded."
Viktor Frankl's training as a psychiatrist allowed him a remarkable perspective on the psychology of survival. In these inspired pages, he asserts that the "the will to meaning" is the basic motivation for human life. This simple and yet profound statement became the basis of his psychological theory, logotherapy, and forever changed the way we understand our humanity in the face of suffering. As Nietzsche put it, "He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how." Frankl's seminal work offers us all an avenue to greater meaning and purpose in our own lives-a way to transcend suffering and find significance in the act of living.
Viktor E. Frankl was professor of neurology and psychiatry at the University of Vienna Medical School until his death in 1997. His twenty-nine books have been translated into twenty-one languages. During World War II, he spent three years in Auschwitz, Dachau, and other concentration camps.
A new gift edition of a modern classic, with supplemental photographs, speeches, letters, and essays
The Library of Congress called it “one of the ten most influential books in America,” the New York Times pronounced it “an enduring work of survival literature,” and O, The Oprah Magazine praised it as “one of the most significant books of the twentieth century.” Man’s Search for Meaning has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Viktor Frankl’s classic tribute to coping with suffering and finding one’s purpose continues to give readers solace and inspiration.
This attractive new hardcover gift edition will appeal to long-time admirers and first-time readers alike. Through photographs and supplemental writings, readers see the professional and personal sides of this beloved thinker. In a letter written upon his release from the camps, Frankl describes his pain upon learning that his parents and wife perished; in an essay, he gives hope to readers living in uncertain times; in a eulogy to his deceased colleagues, he speaks of man’s capacity for evil and for good; and in a speech, he memorializes the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi camps. With these writings, readers can gain a fuller understanding of Frankl’s enduring lessons on perseverance and strength.
About the Author
Born in Vienna in 1905, Viktor E. Frankl earned an MD and a PhD from the University of Vienna. He published more than thirty books on theoretical and clinical psychology and served as a visiting professor and lecturer at Harvard, Stanford, and elsewhere. Frankl died in 1997.