Start reading The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available
 

The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves [Kindle Edition]

Stephen Grosz
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (414 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
Kindle Price: £6.40 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
You Save: £2.59 (29%)
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £6.40  
Hardcover --  
Paperback £6.29  
Audio Download, Unabridged £11.80 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial
Audio, CD, Audiobook --  
Kindle Daily Deal
Kindle Daily Deal: Up to 70% off
Each day we unveil a new book deal at a specially discounted price--for that day only. Learn more about the Kindle Daily Deal or sign up for the Kindle Daily Deal Newsletter to receive free e-mail notifications about each day's deal.

Book Description

A Sunday Times bestseller



Longlisted for the Guardian first book award



A Radio 4 Book of the Week



This book is about learning to live.



In simple stories of encounter between a psychoanalyst and his patients, The Examined Life reveals how the art of insight can illuminate the most complicated, confounding and human of experiences.



These are stories about our everyday lives: they are about the people we love and the lies that we tell; the changes we bear, and the grief. Ultimately, they show us not only how we lose ourselves but how we might find ourselves too.



Product Description

Review

"I was enthralled. profound and moving, packed large ideas into a slim volume" (Lucy Lethbridge Observer Books of the Year)

"With deceptive simplicity and gentle wisdom, Grosz teases out a lesson or chases down a fugitive insight. I have distrusted psychoanalysis for years, but I would leap onto Grosz's couch" (James McConnachie The Sunday Times Books of the Year)

"This moving book of patient portraits by the psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz will make the reader think of Freud's keenly observed and literary-minded case studies. Writing with sympathy and insight, Mr Grosz distils 25 years of work into a series of slim, piercing chapters that read like a combination of Chekhov and Oliver Sacks" (Michiko Kakutani New York Times)

"The success of The Examined Life by the psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz has, I think, relatively little to do with his clinical know-how; it rests, as Freud's did, on his story-telling abilities" (Rachel Cooke Observer)

"Grosz is a superb storyteller and tells lots of his patients' stories with sensitivity, but also with great acuity. You might keep thinking you recognise things about people you know" (William Leith Evening Standard)

"A wonderful example of a book that provides a safe space that can be used as a base to explore the less safe" (Alex Clark Guardian)

"Riveting... Grosz is adept at uncovering the little lies we tell ourselves and he's very perceptive about the potentially positive effects of bad experiences" (Daily Telegraph)

"Because of [Grosz's] skill at getting to the heart of the matter, we forget the distance separating us and become quickly involved in the lives of those he discusses" (Mail on Sunday)

"Absolutely fascinating. You'll be amateur psychoanalysing yourself and everyone you know" (Independent on Sunday)

"It made me stop and think, and it has stayed with me. Grosz is a superb storyteller and tells lots of his patients' stories with sensitivity, but also with great acuity. You might keep thinking you recognise things about people you know" (William Leith Scotsman)

Book Description

This book is about learning to live. In simple stories of encounter between a psychoanalyst and his patients, The Examined Life reveals how the art of insight can illuminate the most complicated, confounding and human of experiences.

Product details


More About the Author

Stephen Grosz is a practicing psychoanalyst--he has worked with patients for more than twenty-five years. Born in America, educated at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Oxford University, he lives in London. A Sunday Times bestseller, The Examined Life is his first book.

For more information please visit www.stephengrosz.com

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
106 of 112 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Distilling decades of therapeutic work into a slim volume that reads like a collection of short stories, Grosz offers an intriguing insight into contemporary psychoanalysis. A married father-of-four announces that he is thinking of coming out, aged 71, while a woman who has just celebrated her 50th birthday realises a sexy dream that bothered her was about her son.

Anger, boredom, self-delusion, lying, being stuck, Grosz even shows how boredom is worth thinking about. He draws not just on his patients, but literature too - Scrooge shows us how we can't live a life without loss, a Herman Melville character reveals how `we all have a cheering voice that says "let us start now, right away"' and an opposing, negative voice that responds "I would prefer not to."'

But the real joy of this book is that all this is done with such a light touch. I'd take issue with the other reviewer who suggests we go and read Freud instead - many who are attracted to this book are unlikely to, and that's the very point. It avoids jargon, and in an era when CBT is frequently hailed as The Answer to mental health problems (it's just about the only therapy one can get on the NHS these days, though it's still a postcode lottery), it's a timely reminder not to throw the proverbial baby out with the bathwater. Don't get me wrong, I think CBT can be invaluable tool, but let's remember looking at our entrenched patterns can help patients who suffer too. To have made complex theories accessible to a mainstream audience is a fine achievement, and to Mr Grosz I'd like to say: THANK YOU.
Was this review helpful to you?
151 of 163 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
I loved this book - reading these short stories ( based on sessions between patients and psychoanalyst) is like lifting the curtains on the lives of your friends and neighbours and, yes, even yourself... To this end I have been posting this book through the doors of aforementioned friends in the hope that we can pepper our walks and talks with some of the insights offered by author Stephen Grosz. Have we over-praised our children? Have we invented fantasy escapes from our everyday lives? Does change scare us? And if, like me, you suspect that psychoanalysis might be a bit of a magician's art, you will be won over by the clarity and humility of the writing and the fascinating insights into how psychoanalysts actually work. The great joy of these highly engaging stories is that, unlike reading fiction where you might think, do I really believe a character would have acted like that, or, is this plot really believable, you know these stories are true: how satisfying it is to be presented with a character in crisis only to discover exactly what precipitated the crisis and how resolution might - or might not - be achieved; such a joy! If I was pressed, I would say this book is a meeting of Jane Austen, Tolstoy and Hello magazine. What a treat.
Was this review helpful to you?
121 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The life analytic 8 Jan. 2013
By Uncle Barbar TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
To be honest, I am not a fan of Freudian analysis, regarding CBT as a less fanciful, if blunter tool for quickly fixing unwanted behaviour. However, I am fascinated by what people do, why they do it and how they think. I am pleased to say that the author does not shoehorn established Freudian ideas on to individual cases but is more intent on squirreling out a unique reason, based on the client's personal history, to account for their idiosyncratic behaviour. To me, this reflects more what true psychological analysis should be. The author does not confine himself purely to relating the details of his clients. He also describes an intriguing case he learned about while chatting to somebody on an aeroplane flight, proving that the author delights in the machinations of the human mind to the extent that he takes his work home with him.

Each account is gripping in its own right and each gives an insight into human nature and the sometimes obscure reasons which may cause it. As you read, you will recognise the behaviour of friends, colleagues and loved ones of your own and start pondering just what makes them tick... Whether you are a champion of Freudian psychoanalysis or not, there is plenty to enjoy in this book because the stories are well told and intriguing. Whether you agree with the author's reading of the situation is of course open to debate but nevertheless it will get you thinking, and that cannot be bad. I found this to be an absorbing and entertaining read and one that I would highly recommend.
Was this review helpful to you?
42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Interesting - I highly recommend 12 Jan. 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this on my Kindle. Whilst I appreciate that the focus of the book is observations from analysis, I would have liked the book a little better if it had given a bit more information at the end of each chapter (regarding what happened next) which the author did do with the patient who had AIDS - I laughed out loud at the triumph in this patient's comment to his medication ! (and it is to, rather than about his medication!)

However, I do also appreciate that these are real people and as such they are not fictional short stories with neat endings. Additionally, I also know that whilst some patients return to therapy with further problems later in the transit of their lives, some do not and the series of sessions during a current issue is sometimes all that the analyst gets chance to work on/with the patient.

The only chapter I had any concerns about was the one associated with closure. I completely agree that dealing with death does not in any way have neat endings either, but I do sometimes think that with counselling or analysis or any kind of talking therapy, the patient can gain insights into their grief, especially if the person who died was someone with whom the patient had a particularly difficult relationship. Then, as a result of those insights, they are able to find the bereavement process slightly easier.

However, I do think closure is more useful as a concept when people are recovering from serious assaults etc rather than for bereavement so in this respect agree with the author.

I was really glad I had read this book and would recommend it to anyone for the author's insights and honesty - the chapter with his father moved me very deeply. It is one of those few books I've read where I felt I wanted to talk to the author afterwards !
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Written with wrong intentions?
Author Stephen Grosz writes a book about examples taken from his patients as he is a psychoanalyst. I wanted to read it the first time I saw in the bookstore because examples of... Read more
Published 8 hours ago by Claudia G.
4.0 out of 5 stars Very engaging writing and gives an idea of the range ...
Very engaging writing and gives an idea of the range of problems a psychotherapist encounters but each 'story' is short and feels incomplete.
Published 1 day ago by cathc
5.0 out of 5 stars Brill
As Counsellor I found this light but interest. I enjoyed someone else's dilemmas and thoughts on the therapeutic poo process
Published 6 days ago by Sheila O.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved this book! Full of enlightening stories written in a beautifully simple and engaging way.
Published 20 days ago by c sweeney
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Enjoyable and easy to read, and the book was in a great condition! thanks
Published 21 days ago by S Gascon
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Brilliant book. Read it
Published 24 days ago by PaulaBXX
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written considered pieces which link together somehow
Hopeful insightful thought provoking. Need an uplifting epilogue of some sort. ½hnmjkiolluygbgfdcvjnnh bvdscbjjhhgg bvdscbjjhhgg f fightbfrtnkhgfhh baffled by a few
Published 1 month ago by eryl davies
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great thank you
Published 1 month ago by Claire Ellis
5.0 out of 5 stars A very human book
I loved reading it ! With exceptional skills Stephen Grosz brings intricate journeys of the human heart as simple yet moving conversations at your kitchen table.
Published 1 month ago by RM
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding
Thoroughly enthralling. The only book I've allowed myself to write in, simply because I wanted to keep going back to something he'd said. Read more
Published 1 month ago by HettyP
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category