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In a world become ever larger and more impersonal, Malouf finds happiness in an unlikely place. This is a book to savour and reflect upon by one of Australia's greatest novelists.

What Makes For a Happy Life?

Amid the constant chatter of today's world, with its 24-hour news cycles, Twitter and mobile communications, David Malouf returns to the ancient question of what makes us happy.
With grace and profundity, Malouf discusses new and old ways to talk about contentment and the self.  In considering the happy life - what it is, and what makes it possible - he returns to the 'highest wisdom' of the classics, looks at how, thanks to Thomas Jefferson's way with words, happiness became a 'right,' and contrasts joy in the flesh, as depicted by Rubens and Rembrandt, with the way we view our bodies today.
In a world become ever larger and more impersonal, Malouf finds happiness in an unlikely place. This is a book to savour and reflect upon by one of Australia's greatest novelists.
'A rewarding reflection on human restlessness and the need for limits.' The Age
'Entertaining and insightful.' The Sydney Morning Herald
'A wonderful . . . reflection on happiness in the Western tradition.' The Canberra Times

Reviews

'A poised and deeply humane essay, beautifully written and carefully argued.' Australian 'A rewarding reflection on human restlessness and the need for limits.' Age 'Entertaining and insightful.' Sydney Morning Herald

PRH, PRH

'A wonderful . . . reflection on happiness in the Western tradition.' Canberra Times 'A worthwhile read . . . carried along by Malouf's smooth prose and the quiet, modest way he reveals a lifetime of observation, reading and thinking.' Adelaide Review

PRH, PRH

PRH, PRH

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781863955461

    October 3, 2011

    Black Inc (Adult)

    144 pages

    RRP $19.95

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Also by David Malouf

The One Day: Short Black 7
Being There
The Writing Life
A First Place
Earth Hour
Harland's Half Acre
The Conversations At Curlew Creek
The Happy Life: The Search of Contentment in the Modern World: QuarterlyEssay 41
Ransom
The Complete Stories
On Experience
Revolving Days: Selected Poems
Every Move You Make
Typewriter Music
Made in England: Australia's British Inheritance: Quarterly Essay 12
Dream Stuff
Johnno
Jane Eyre
The Great World
12 Edmondstone Street
Antipodes
Fly Away Peter
An Imaginary Life
Child's Play

Recommendations

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The Shepherd's Life
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There It Is Again
The New Puberty
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The Happy Life: The Search of Contentment in the Modern World: QuarterlyEssay 41
A Hero for High Times
Thinking Without A Banister
ISS 23 Heroes, villains and the muslim exception
On Being Awesome
Scraps of Wool
Chronicles of a Liquid Society
The Conversation Yearbook 2017
I Can't Breathe
The Meaning of Rice
Whiteley on Trial
The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve
Labor of Love