Life Itself Is an Art : The Life and Work of Erich Fromm
Kassouf, Susan (TRN)
Bloomsbury USA Academic 2019/06
194 p. 21 cm
Choice Reviews 2019 November
From his very intimate knowledge of Fromm's life and ideas, and his access to an archive that includes 6,000 letters, Funk introduces Fromm's central concepts and examines them in relation to Fromm's lived experiences and to his idea that life itself is an art.
Erich Fromm (1900-1980) is known to most readers as the author of the international bestseller The Art of Loving (1956). What may be less widely known is that Fromm was a social psychoanalyst whose psychoanalytic theories, developed around a humanistic concept of man and society, have had a profound impact on many fields and disciplines: on social life and societal organization, on politics, on religion, on psychotherapy and, last but not least, on the practice of mindfulness. Rainer Funk was Erich Fromm's last assistant. He wrote his dissertation about Fromm, was designated by Fromm's last will to be his sole literary executor, and is the editor of Fromm's writings. From his very intimate knowledge of Fromm's life and ideas, and his access to an archive that includes 6,000 letters, Funk introduces Fromm's central concepts and examines them in relation to Fromm's lived experiences and to his idea that life itself is an art. The question of "the art of living" runs through all of the chapters, from the Introduction, in which Funk describes meeting Fromm for the first time in 1972, to the last chapter, in which Funk reflects on the impact of Fromm's social-psychoanalytic writings and his efforts to live well.
Table of Contents
List of Figures Preface Introduction: Direct Encounter Face to Face Letting Someone Sense: "This is You" An Exhilarating Experience Encountering the Stranger The Art of Living as Direct Encounter 1 Roads to the Unconscious Fromm's Road to Psychoanalysis The Unconscious as Repressed The Power of Rationalization Indicators of the Unconscious Defensive Strategies against Becoming Conscious of the Unconscious Understanding the Unconscious The Dream as a Road to the Unconscious Free Association as a Road to the Unconscious Parapraxis as a Road to the Unconscious Transference as a Road to the Unconscious 2 The Individual as a Social Being Erich Fromm - An Only Child Becomes a Psychoanalyst of Society What Makes a Father Beat His Children? The Individual as Socialized Being The Meaning of Character Formations Society within the Individual - the Social Character 3 How Man Succeeds Love in the Life of Erich Fromm What is Good for Man The Primary Tendency to Grow The Growth Orientation of One's Own Powers Conceptual Approaches The Productive Orientation The Capacity for Growth at the Crossroads 4 How Society Succeeds at the Expense of Man Erich Fromm's Suffering in Society The Authoritarian Character - at the Expense of Autonomy The Marketing Orientation - at the Expense of a Sense of Identity The Narcissistic Character - at the Expense of Interest in the Other The Ego Orientation - at the Expense of Ego Strength 5 Ways toward Direct Encounter Fromm's Guides on the Way toward Direct Encounter Preconditions for an Encounter with One's Own Self Capacity for Critique and Readiness for Dis-Illusionment Preparatory Exercises Self-Analysis as a Way of Encounter Encounters and Their Effects Bibliography Index