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How to Live

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How to Live

A Life of Montaigne in one question and twenty attempts at an answer



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How to Live by Sarah Bakewell
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We owe to Montaigne the idea that immersion in one s inner world can be a sociable act, and that what makes us an individual also brings out the humanity we share with others. Living from 1533 to 1592, in a France dominated by bloody and miserable civil war, he maintained as private a life as possible while writing a hundred or so lively, revealing pieces which he called essais, or tries . He talks about eelings that are hard to express or even to notice- about the experience of being lazy, or brave, or indecisive; about lying; about obsessive fears of death or illness, and the way they seem to recede as ctual misfortunes increase. He often describes the sheer pleasure of being alive a sensation he has learned to enhance simply by paying close attention to it. This book tells his life story the first biography in English for nearly fifty years examining his youthful journeys to Italy and his friendships, with the scholar and poet Etienne la Boetie and with his protegee and virtual adopted daughter Marie de Gournay. But it also traces the way generations of readers have felt drawn to him since his death, recognising their own features in his self-portrait. Ultimately it a

Author Biography

Sarah Bakewell had a wandering childhood in Europe, Australia and England. After studying at the University of Essex, she was a curator of early printed books at the Wellcome Library before becoming a full-time writer, publishing her highly acclaimed biographies The Smart and The English Dane. She lives in London, where she teaches creative writing at City University and catalogues rare book collections for the National Trust..
Release date Australia
January 14th, 2010
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Chatto & Windus
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