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69 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will change your attitudes.
In a world of fuzzy love epitomised by trashy love songs whichbrainwash young people into thinking such things as 'I can't live without you' and 'I love you more than life itself', this book offers an invaluable perspective on just what it is you might be feeling when you 'fall in love' with someone. Indeed, Fromm questions the whole concept of 'falling in love'. One...
Published on 22 Aug 1999

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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Yes, but.
This book was written a long time ago and it shows. Whilst I thought the overall message was very good - that is, in order to love you need to develop your entire personality - the book only takes male sexuality into account. The pronoun is always he, except in one or two brief sections where Fromm talks about mothers. He is entirely dismissive of gay people, writing "the...
Published on 8 April 2011 by Brrnrrd


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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Art of Loving, 14 Mar 2009
By 
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) (Paperback)
This is a brilliant book for all people who are seeking to develop an intimate realtionship with another person or just wnating to understand more about love. It is a MUST read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Introduction, by Erich Fromm, 2 Jun 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Paperback)
The reading of this book would be disappointing experience for anyone who expects easy in the art of loving. This book on th eocntrary, wants to show that love is not a sentiment in wich can be easily indulged in by anyone, regardless of the level of maturiy reached by him.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars couldn't get into it - sorry!, 10 Aug 2013
By 
Ms. Margaret Merry (Fife, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Art of Loving (Kindle Edition)
Loved the premise but....... still on the kindle for another rainy day. Though would probably have to be on holiday and fairly bored to flick back to it.
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10 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a book that woke me up!, 2 July 2003
By 
dreamkev888 (Rhyl, Clwyd United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) (Paperback)
before i red this book, i was one of them poor innocent souls whos losted and waiting for answers on what is the point of life?
until i met my flat who introduced me this book, i was totally inspired by the way Erich fromm explains love, which soon answered alot of my questions on problems that i've faced with my ex girlfriends.
But most importantly this book woke me up to really face my life with hope and confident. This book has really changed my life, well am not saying it will 100% change yours, but why not give it a go, theres no harm in taking in new knowledge, like the book says "the more knowledge is inherent in a thing, the greater the love is"
KYU
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6 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Like a zen manual on vegetable growing, written by someone who hates vegetables, 12 Nov 2011
By 
Rerevisionist (Manchester, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) (Paperback)
I remember buying this book in about 1967; I'm revisiting my copy, to see if it had any substantial content. I can remember almost nothing from it - an account of wartime trampling to death; maybe an account of a patient wasting Fromm's time. Fromm suggests to me, now, the Frankfurt 'school' - is the purpose of this book to damage Gentile society? Then again it might be related to Freud - sexual undercurrents, plus weird voyages into excrement and incest. Or 'Depth psychology'? Could it be about traditional love - couples, parents? Intense love? Love of country? Love of tribe? Love of perhaps art and culture - or just possibly food or football games or the mass media? Love of cruelty, perhaps? Love of solitude? Maybe it's full of allusions to the 'dysfunctions' of Americans and Europeans - in 1957, white Americans and Europeans? Of course it could be about the maltreatment of Jews - not anyone else, of course; possibly with emphasis on Germany? Maybe the book was designed to look like a sex manual, for extra sales? Or was it perhaps written to make a reputation - publicity handled by the usual types? Or written to make money? Or to get a job? Or as something like how to influence people and win lovers, but in an artistic way?

On reopening my copy, I was surprised to find I'd made notes - it was unindexed - years ago, mostly on authors - Spinoza, Albert Schweitzer, Freud - on Sex, but also 'Civilization and its Discontents', Isaac Babel, Weber and Jung, Simone Weil (a notorious 'survivor'), Calvin (on the Christian Religion) and Luther, William James, Meister Eckhart, Maimonides (of 'The Guide for the Perplexed'), Heraclitus, Hegel, Marx and Aristotle, Marcuse. Non-authored written material includes the Talmud, the Book of Jonah, the 'story of creation' and the Old Testament, and material on mysticism and Indian beliefs and Zen. Fromm refers to the 'Western Enlightenment' which *may* I think be a code-word for Jews being allowed more freedoms - the Renaissance and Reformation getting less, or no, attention. Dale Carnegie and Norman Vincent Peale of the strenuous self-improvement types are in there.

And there's quite a bit of unreferenced stuff on India, China, the 'mystic poet Rumi' and so on, and on earlier cultures, all mostly uncheckable and vague - patriarchal and 'matriarchal' systems, the function of 'orgies', possibly meaning holidays, and so on.

It's strange how little psychological material there is: H S Sullivan with an 'interpersonal theory'. The blurb describes Fromm as 'possibly the greatest of the post-Freudian psychologists..'

The book has four parts - I Is Love an Art?, II The theory of Love - by far the longest section, III Love and Its Disintegration in Contemporary Western Society, and IV The Practice of Love.

Quite a lot of the book explains that an 'art' - and Fromm includes anything that needs training - needs concentration, patience etc. It reads like a child unwillingly forced to do piano lessons. He has a very strenuous outlook, at least in theory, though I can't imagine he ever put it into practice.

The 'theory' section includes types of love. People in (or having heard of) the Christian tradition will be familiar with the idea that everyone deserves love - though perhaps only after a dose of correction. The idea of universal Christian love is almost absent from this book. So is the idea of loving a small racist cult! It's striking how unloveable Fromm finds people - he states most people have never met a mature adult in their lives; and zombie-type people who chatter without thinking should be avoided; and how hardly anyone has known real love. Insanely, he then describes mother love in terms of the highest praise, despite presumably referring to real mothers. This is 'unconditional love'. Fatherly love is conditional on the child doing things the father likes, however. There is a male principle which inserts, and a female principle which receives. However everyone has a bit of each - Fromm reads almost as though he thinks sex is a 'social construct', but isn't quite ready yet to push such nonsense.

The final practice chapter has more strenuous material, pages of absurd stuff on 'faith', which Fromm confuses with scientific belief, and some samples of psychological oddities.

In fact the book is full of sentences which are nonsense, or obviously untested or not properly defined. And I mean this! I can only think he considered his target readership unable to manage long sentences, or so impressed they won't notice they are evasive. Some examples:-
'The nature of unselfishness becomes particularly apparent in its effect on others, and most frequently in our culture in the effect the 'unselfish' mother has on her children.'
'Love of man is not, as is frequently supposed, an abstraction coming after the love for a specific person, but it is its premise, although genetically it is acquired in loving specific individuals.'
'The basic need to fuse with another person so as to transcend the prison of one's separateness is closely related to another specifically human desire, that to know the 'secret of man'.'
'To be concentrated in relation to others means primarily to be able to listen.'
'[Erotic Love] is often confused with the explosive experience of 'falling' in love, the sudden collapse of the barriers which existed until that moment between two strangers.'
'There is hardly any activity, any enterprise, which is started with such tremendous hopes and expectations, and yet, which fails so regularly as love.'
'Giving is more joyous than receiving, not because it is a deprivation, but because in the act of giving lies the expression of my aliveness.'
'While it raises no objection to apply the concept of love to various objects, it is a widespread belief that, while it is virtuous to love others, it is sinful to love oneself.'
'If love is a capacity of the mature, productive character, it follows that the capacity to love in an individual living in any given culture depends on the influence this culture has on the character of the average person.'

There's some material on 'capitalism' which, as is customary, isn't defined accurately. Of course Fromm says little about the USSR and its hellish history. Fromm has a problem common to anyone who claims psychological expertise, but also claims to dislike a social system, namely how can you give sensible advice if the whole society is skewed or hostile to most people?

Unimpressive. And difficult to review because of its gelatinous opacity.
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5 of 28 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The Art of Loving, 31 Jan 2006
By 
serayfah (dimona , Israel) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) (Paperback)
this was a very inspiring and profounwriting. A must read for anyone who wants to contribute to the uplifting of the global consciousness , of true love and oneness of all beings . To understand and began to pratice the masterery of live though self love . It also gives a clear understanding of the world that has shaped our life views.
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2 of 62 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Point out Erich Fromm, 5 April 2003
By 
This review is from: The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) (Paperback)
whatever erich fromm has describe in this book is the way he thinks himself as a male aspect. but i think this is womens world and they got mostely 100 percent choice rate.thats why mostely women are mentaly rich and less hot then the male.every where in the world male has got stronger sex feelings than the female. in my point of view its all about our own decisions and desires.if you look it through the women than its a bit different than the erich fromm ,the way he described.each and every one of us is its own prosicutor . judge, jewry, and the hangman.
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The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development)
The Art of Loving (Classics of Personal Development) by Erich Fromm (Paperback - 9 April 2010)
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