Solitude was a book I’d discovered while I was wandering around books in one of my favourite bookshops in London. I thought Solitude, as a title, was very striking so I picked it up and started to read the back cover. The first sentence I read was from one of my favourite writers, Anita Brookner. I knew I had to read this as soon as I saw her name. And also the fact that I’ve always love to be a loner arouse my curiosity.
This book brings excellent news for those who, whatever their reasons for doing so, live alone… It is heartening to find a psychiatrist of Dr Storr’s eminence diverging from the received wisdom.
Anita Brookner, Spectator
When I spend a lot of time with people, I feel tired and a little bit depressed. (And I’m sure most of you can relate.) I have found this book in one of those periods that I would like to spend time with myself, so I bought it without thinking much. I was expecting a panegyric on the greatness of solitude from the book, and I was going to spend lovely hours with it by myself. It was a book that didn’t match my expectations nonetheless it was perfect and very informative.
Solitude and Creativity
In Solitude, the famous psychiatrist Anthony Storr refutes the thesis that happiness only depends on successful human relations. We have all heard that happiness can only be achieved through successful human relationships for years, and we have worked hard on it. But I do not believe that this is the only source of happiness after Storr’s book and all my experience. I’m sure you’ll think very differently after reading this book as well.
In Solitude, Storr examines famous figures such as Beethoven, Kipling, Goya, Saki, Henry James and many more and touches upon the reasons for their creativity. This is a perfect non-fiction book that you will read with curiosity from the beginning to end. You will be amazed at what a powerful mind can overcome, and you will reconsider your relationship with loneliness. A must read. Enjoy!
About the book: Solitude
Solitude was seminal in challenging the established belief that “interpersonal relationships of an intimate kind are the chief, if not the only, source of human happiness.” Indeed, most self-help literature still places relationships at the center of human existence. Lucid and lyrical, Storr’s book cites numerous examples of brilliant scholars and artists — from Beethoven and Kant to Anne Sexton and Beatrix Potter — to demonstrate that solitude ranks alongside relationships in its impact on an individual’s well-being and productivity, as well as on society’s progress and health. But solitary activity is essential not only for geniuses, says Storr; the average person, too, is enriched by spending time alone.
For fifteen years, readers have found inspiration and renewal in Storr’s erudite, compassionate vision of human experience.
About the author: Anthony Storr
Anthony Storr was an English psychiatrist and author. He was a child who was to endure the typical trauma of early 20th century UK boarding schools. He was educated at Winchester, Christ’s College, the University of Cambridge and Westminster Hospital. He qualified as a doctor in 1944 and subsequently specialised in psychiatry.