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The Age of Absurdity: Why Modern Life Makes it Hard to be Happy

The Age of Absurdity: Why Modern Life Makes it Hard to be Happy

Paperback

By (author) Michael Foley

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  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd
  • Format: Paperback | 272 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 196mm x 18mm | 960g
  • Publication date: 17 February 2011
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1847396275
  • ISBN 13: 9781847396273
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 9,801

Product description

The good news is that the great thinkers from history have proposed the same strategies for happiness and fulfilment. The bad news is that these turn out to be the very things most discouraged by contemporary culture. This knotty dilemma is the subject of The Age of Absurdity - a wry and accessible investigation into how the desirable states of wellbeing and satisfaction are constantly undermined by modern life. Michael Foley examines the elusive condition of happiness common to philosophy, spiritual teachings and contemporary psychology, then shows how these are becoming increasingly difficult to apply in a world of high expectations. The common challenges of earning a living, maintaining a relationship and ageing are becoming battlegrounds of existential angst and self-loathing in a culture that demands conspicuous consumption, high-octane partnerships and perpetual youth. In conclusion, rather than denouncing and rejecting the age, Foley presents an entertaining strategy of not just accepting but embracing today's world - finding happiness in its absurdity.

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Author information

Michael Foley was born in Derry, Northern Ireland, but since 1972 he has lived in London, working as a Lecturer in Information Technology. He has published four novels, four collections of poetry and a collection of translations from French poetry, which have earned impressive reviews from The Guardian, New Statesman and New York Times. The Age of Absurdity is his first non-fiction book.

Review quote

"Bound to be compared to the works of Patrick McCabe and Roddy Doyle, Foley's novel is stingingly funny, ruefully perceptive and anything but unremarkable." --"Publishers Weekly" on "Getting Used to Not Being Remarkable"