Party of One: The Loners' Manifesto Paperback – 17 Dec 2002
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About the Author
Native Californian Anneli Rufus is the author of several successful travel guides, including "Weird Europe" for St. Martin's Press, and "America Off the Wall: The West Coast". She lives in Berkeley, California.
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Top Customer Reviews
Anyway, about the book. If you have ever felt anti-social or 'faulty', just because you like being alone, I urge you to buy this book. It really makes you appreciate just how much we are still in an age of 'mob mentality', and how much pressure there is for everyone to be part of this 'mob'(as Rufus calls them). Loners really are treated like weirdos, freaks, and even worse, as potentially dangerous.
Because Loners are a misunderstood minority, the super sociable majority will always criticize, and try to 'cure' them. In the same way fundamentalist Christians try to 'cure' homosexuality. But 'The Loners' Manifesto' argues that we no longer need to hang around in tribes and clans, and spend every waking moment with others for the good of the community - 'The time when barns needed raising is over.' Rufus points out that being able to spend lots of time alone is one of the great products of thousands of years of civilization.
This book really validates the Loner, and argues so brilliantly about how great it is to be a Loner (and it is), that I feel better about myself just having read it. Not only that, it is extremely well-written, and often very funny...Read more ›
This book made me so relieved to be able to reclaim the L word. Now I tell people when another criminal is mislabelled what the word really means. Thanks Anneli!
She makes too many side-swipes at people who are sociable. I can't imagine being that way - truth is, wouldn't *want* to be that way - but I don't think people who are are somehow inferior, or vapid; and I really resent the implication that to be insular is to be bitter, and to loathe those Other People who are crazy enough to enjoy spending time with *more* Other People.
If Rufus believes that being a loner is acceptable, why the need to put down others who are different? It's counter-productive, and ultimately reflects badly on those of us who simply prefer to be alone.
On the plus side, Party of One gathers together a staggering amount of multi-cultural information supporting the validity of being a loner, and there's no doubt that if you feel ashamed of being the way you are, Rufus will provide ample support, and allay your fears.
It's just the "cornered animal" aspect that really ruined it for me. To choose to be alone is every bit as normal, acceptable and healthy as it is to choose to be surrounded by people, and we needn't insult and denigrate others in order to inflate and validate our own position.
I can appreciate that this is a clarion call; Rufus believes she is pushing *back* against a sort of cultural/social "persecution" of those who like to be alone, and that's fine. Media connotations aside, it's not something I've ever encountered, and I don't care enough about the word "loner" to lay claim to it. Some do, and that's honestly fine. But the same ends can be achieved without the reverse snobbery and scorn.
One very accurate description of the Solitary is that he/she makes rich use of solitude. They are not sitting there staring at the telly, waiting for their partner to come home and entertain hem. They are busy: painting, playing the piano, day-dreaming . . .
If this describes you, and yet you still feel obscurely guilty, nagged or pressurized by others into being something different, then you should really read this book.
Being a Loner doesn't signify an incapacity for friendship or intimacy, as Rufus makes clear, but a deliberate choice to have a lot of solitude. I'm a perfectly successful creative myself, well into my forties, with very close, old friendships that will always endure. But I STILL find myself trotting obediently along to noisy drinks parties which I know I won't enjoy. Well NO MORE! Thank you so much, Author. This is a terrific, liberating book in every way.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the best books I've read this year. It definitely help boosting your confidence and makes a clear distinction between a loner and someone just feeling lonely. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Elena Sánchez
Nicely written and insightful book that any loner will relate toPublished 21 months ago by the 10th doctor
A book that's very easy to read. this book taught me that I'm allowed to be just who I am. I refer to it regularly when I forget and always feel better instantly. Read morePublished on 5 Nov. 2013 by Lizzy
A very easy read, and read it in a day as I am currently on Holiday. Most of the things she says strikes a cord with me, but I don't agree with everything she says. Read morePublished on 11 Sept. 2013 by brynbaby123
As I myself am one of the most genuinely self-contained people I have ever met I was a little bit disconcerted to discover how many of 'us' there are out there. Read morePublished on 12 Aug. 2013 by DMC
If, like me, you prefer your own company, then this will make you feel okay in a society that villifies the loner. Read morePublished on 11 Feb. 2013 by martart99
Really enjoyed this book. As someone who has found thatI enjoy my own company more than that of others, and, like many people, feeling like I was 'odd' or 'withdrawn' as a result,... Read morePublished on 11 Oct. 2012 by shepherdess
What a marvellous book. Insightful, interesting and well-written. The perfect antidote to too much company. Read morePublished on 26 Mar. 2012 by AL
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