Out of My Life and Thought: An Autobiography Paperback – 11 Jun 2009
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Out of My Life and Thought shatters the old myth and allows us to glimpse the real Albert Schweitzer, a man whose moral example is as relevant and compelling... as it was in the 1930s on first publication. Eloquent and heartfelt.(Los Angeles Times)
An authentic twentieth-century classic. Few books in our time have had a greater impact on the life and values of untold numbers of people.(Norman Cousins)
The best known of Albert Schweitzer's many books--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. See all Product Description
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The biography ends in the year 1931, well before the advent of the Second World War. Schweitzer was only fifty-six years of age when he penned this work, well before receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, living and working for another forty-four years. Curiously, when his publisher requested that he write an autobiography, he was hesitant, as he was more or less still in his prime. However, as he wrote to his publisher fourteen years later on his seventieth birthday, memory fades with age, and he believed that writing about himself at that stage of his life, he could put down those important memories that remained fresh in his mind.
Schweitzer is certainly an inspiration - a man of immense strength, physically, emotionally and spiritually, with an almost endless capacity for work. The man worked in the most difficult of circumstances. Practicing medicine in intense tropical heat, day after day, disease run rampant; constant worry over funds to purchase much needed medical supplies. Moreover, the terrible events of two world wars - the odds he worked against to maintain the Lambarene Hospital, to my mind, is simply unimaginable. But the man persisted, rising every morning to meet disease, suffering, violence, death and loneliness.
This is an inspiring little book, charming and entertaining.
George Marshall (see my review of Marshall's excellent biography: Schweitzer) once asked Dr. Schweitzer what professors would best provide him an education on Schweitzer's thoughts. He replied that Marshall should not go to professors but "read my books! No one can express the ideas of a man as well as he has expressed them himself.... read my books".
Bob Frost of "Biography Magazine" once wrote, "Albert Schweitzer is not exactly forgotten today, but his name won't crop up in daily conversation. Fifty years ago, though, people talked about Schweitzer all the time. An American magazine selected him, ahead of Albert Einstein, as the "world's greatest living nonpolitical person." He was the subject of an Oscar-winning documentary, won the Nobel Peace Prize, and appeared on the cover of Time magazine. Fueled by idealism and burning spiritual passion, this medical missionary led one of the most intense lives of the 20th century."
Be apprized that "Out of my Life and Thoughts" is not an easy read. Dr. Schweitzer's theology and philosophy, though dense, is not incomprehensible. And due to the translation from French to English, you many find yourself reading a passage multiple times to get the gist his thoughts.
That said, for students of this great mind, this is a must read. Strongly recommended. 4.5 stars.
his childhood and early years of theological study,
his love of organs and Bach, his decision to enter missionary
work, the subsequent years of medical training, and his first 16 years of missionary work in Africa.
It covers his life up to 1930, when he was 55 years old.
A very readable book, this book is an excellent introduction to Dr. Schweitzer's life and ethics.
According to the preface, he considered it his most important book. In Schweitzer's usual modest
but not self-denigrating style, he describes how he came to believe in the important of service to
humanity. The reader is bound to be awed by the scope of Schweitzer's intellectual and
spiritual accomplishment, but reassured by the man's humble concern for others.
The only significant drawback of this book is that it ends fairly early in his missionary career. It is
left to others to complete his biography.
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