Varieties of Melancholy: A Hopeful Guide to Our Somber Moods (Hardcover)

Varieties of Melancholy: A Hopeful Guide to Our Somber Moods By The School of Life, Alain de Botton (Editor) Cover Image

Varieties of Melancholy: A Hopeful Guide to Our Somber Moods (Hardcover)

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An insightful and consoling guide to the melancholic state of mind.



This is a book that celebrates the most neglected but valuable emotion we can feel: melancholy. Melancholy isn't depression, rage, or bitterness. It's a serene, wise, and kindly response to the difficulties of being alive. It helps us navigate a wise and rational middle ground between extreme despair and na ve optimism.


But melancholy is a well-kept secret. It isn't celebrated or recommended. It remains relatively unexplored in a hyper-competitive, noisy, frantic age.


This book carefully collects and interprets a wide range of universally recognizable forms of melancholy, rendering us less confused by our precious yet elusive feelings. We discover everything from the melancholy of a Sunday evening and the melancholy of adolescence to the melancholy of parties and the infatuated melancholy of having a crush.


Offering a rich and varied portrait of melancholy and its range of emotions, this book leads the reader toward deeper insight, more authentic acceptance, and more honest self-compassion.


  • AN IN-DEPTH EXPLORATION OF A COMPLEX EMOTION through the lens of art, architecture, literature, and philosophy.
  • HOW TO INTERPRET AND ACCEPT our melancholy moods.
  • INCREASE SELF AWARENESS through meditating on melancholy.
  • EXAMINES 35 VARIETIES OF MELANCHOLY including: Dating and Melancholy, Loneliness and Melancholy, Adolescence and Melancholy, and Politics and Melancholy.
The School of Life is a global organization helping people lead more fulfilled lives. Through our range of books, gifts and stationery we aim to prompt more thoughtful natures and help everyone to find fulfillment. The School of Life is a resource for exploring self-knowledge, relationships, work, socializing, finding calm, and enjoying culture through content, community, and conversation. You can find us online, in stores and in welcoming spaces around the world offering classes, events, and one-to-one therapy sessions. The School of Life is a rapidly growing global brand, with over 7 million YouTube subscribers, 389,000 Facebook followers, 239,000 Instagram followers and 163,000 Twitter followers. The School of Life Press brings together the thinking and ideas of the School of Life creative team under the direction of series editor, Alain de Botton. Their books share a coherent, curated message that speaks with one voice: calm, reassuring, and sane.
Product Details ISBN: 9781912891603
ISBN-10: 1912891603
Publisher: School of Life
Publication Date: August 2nd, 2022
Pages: 176
Language: English