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The Hedonism Handbook: Mastering The Lost Arts Of Leisure And Pleasure
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The Hedonism Handbook: Mastering The Lost Arts Of Leisure And Pleasure

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  372 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
In the age of Oprah, Dr. Phil, and countless other self-help disciplinarians, indulging in any kind of pleasurable pastime is on the brink of extinction. But it's not too late to revive those lost pleasures that make life worth living. The Hedonism Handbook can help put the three-martini lunch, the baguette with real butter, the deep tan, the unfiltered cigarette, or the s
Paperback, 208 pages
Published October 13th 2004 by Da Capo Press (first published October 2004)
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Sep 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Five years ago, I sat on a quiet North Shore Kauai beach with a book entitled Bohemian Manifesto in hand. By the time I closed the back cover, I finally knew what label to slap on myself...and experienced a newfound sense of kinship with a totally unorganized tribe. Today, thanks to this book, I can tack "Hedonist" onto the end. Okay, probably redundant but what the heck.

This is a light, fun, but ultimately profound read by a guy who GETS IT. What's "it"? "It" is what life is all about. Having
Gamal Hennessy
This might be the sixth or seventh time I've read this book in the past ten years. It's still one of the most influential books I've ever read.
Franco Arda
Oct 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing

In particular interesting book for people who work 60h+ per week and have no fun. Or people feeling in a mid life crysis. A gem of a book. Some highlights;

o our obsession with dieting (enjoy food, dress well...feel well)
o the mad race about being number one (yes, there are alternatives)
o review on your deadbed (can be a wake up call for some)

Well written and always with 'littel slap on the head' remarks like; if i want it it must be right or life is short, so i must d
Dec 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone!
Recommended to Mike by: Zentropia
Shelves: gift
Many thanks to friends Mark and Darcy for giving me this book - it's superb! A highly entertaining book discussing the nature of hedonism, oozing with witty and surprising information [for example, Benjamin Franklin: "Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy"]. Loads of stuff on how to enjoy life in all its guises all the way from start to finish, so not a book for ultra-conservative control-freak types - or maybe that should be, *especially* for ultra-conservative control-freak ...more
Alexandra Dan
Jul 30, 2010 rated it did not like it
full of miss-interpreted quotes, somehow trying too hard to be funny. not that I didn't agree with some of the ideas, but too many other ideas were either wrongly understood in a sick way, either completely missing. just too light, in a disappointing way. there, I said it!
Sep 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Sep 09, 2017 rated it liked it
Fun little book about remembering to make time for fun!
Davor Bobanac
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Zgodna knjiga za opustit se, nasmijat i dat si opravdanje za učinit koju glupost kad nam se savjest uspava.
Mar 01, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-kindle
I will be the first to admit that I am a product of our workaholic society, with the usual full blown running of the hamster wheel, not knowing how to actually enjoy life. Having already self-diagnosed as a chronic stress addict, however, perhaps made me particularly receptive to the ideas in this book. I found the book's insights on finding sustainable enjoyment and satisfaction in life particularly useful and saw some of my own nascent thoughts on happiness reflected and crystallized into work ...more
Isabella Roland
Apr 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Type A People: read this for a laugh and a reality check! Perfection is unachievable and everything we’re working towards is pretty well pointless. To deny oneself pleasure is a huge disservice to your life. The author’s writing style is something to be coveted. He strings together every sentence in a way that makes you want to keep flipping the page. I enjoyed sitting by the river reading this book. It actually inspired me to spend more time doing the things I enjoy and less time pursuing goals ...more
Jan 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Thanks to a great friend from the workplace I just left - she presented this wonderful book to me on my last day there. It contains helpful quote after helpful quote -- all good nuggets of info presented in a common-sense way. Yes, we all need reminders like this -- esp the workaholics out there, myself included. It's not going to be easy to change, considering I've been like this since my first "real" job as a library page at age 14, making $2.90/hr, but if I can shoot for doing *some* of these ...more
Emre Senoglu
Nov 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Even though it might seem like one of those feel-good books at the first glance, The Hedonism Handbook delivers much more than just a fun read. It gets you to think about the daily life, and its unnecessary burdens without falling into nihilism: "Hedonism should not be confounded with laziness. Laziness is a lack of aspiration and will to create, whereas hedonism is an essential part of one's life, and is one of the main aspects of creativity." As the book argues; just like food and sleep, pleas ...more
Jul 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I remember this book and I remember really enjoying it. I liked it as much as I did because I remember reading it in college and it really felt like there were a lot of people quoting pages from it without really realizing they were.

Give this a read if you like reading a non-fiction version of a ridiculous beach read or just carefully place this on a table or shelf in your home if you want to roast someone by way of making them so bored waiting for you that they'll pick this up to read and real
Jul 27, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: nollig
I liked the premise. I loved the calls to action and lists of things to do, as well as the hostorical significance of things one can do to really enjoy life, but this is a rare case where the font choices and design really made this a pain to read. The ornate script, while at home in a larger format book, takes a while to discern. The huge margins decrease the length of lines, and the peculiar print font, while readable, is just...meh. And before someone says I'm old, I'm not old enough to want ...more
Arjun Ravichandran
Oct 12, 2016 rated it liked it
Short coffee-table'ish book with lists and anecdotes a-plenty. But the author comes from a place of consciousness and cannot be accused of being superficial - rather he uses hedonism as an avenue or gateway to investigate one of our oldest and most irrational prejudices, viz our prejudice against pleasure. People who have some experience with the variety of conscious pleasure-seeking of the Epicurean variety will resonate with the author's spirit.
Jul 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I LOVE this book. It is hilarious. It tells us what we already know (or should know)...that we need to slow down and enjoy the LIVING in our lives....without being cynical or preachy.

I'm sure my friends were tired of me reading them excerpts from the book, but it's too good not to share.

Definately a great book to buy your provides the laughter on the way to putting more laughter in their lives!
Sep 23, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I have always considered myself a hedonist of sorts, and up until now all I knew was that the whole purpose was to live your life as opposed to just existing. After reading this book though, I gained so much more insight into what modern day hedonism is.

It is informative, without being funny, and it is insightful without being preachy. It may be the greatest book I've ever read. From now on "The Hedonism Handbook" will be my "Holy Book", so to speak.
Sep 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fun-fun-fun-read
I really loved this book. Not only because lightening up and having a bit (lot) more fun in my likfe is something that I really need to do, but I thoroghly enjoyed the combination of snarkiness and sarcasm mixed with truth and humor. A great read for anyone, whether you need the lessons in this book or not. :)
Jan 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book makes me so happy! Read this if you want to giggle and feel better about eating too much, drinking too much, gossping too much, spending too much, showing up late to work, or just not showing up to work at all.
Erin E
Dec 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
I read this book when I was toying with the idea of becoming a sociologist. Some of the facts in this book are intriguing while most tenents are tough to understand and agree with (as a workaholic) however it was a wake up call.

When you work too hard, you're not really living.
Jan 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Potential Hedonists
Although written with a tongue in cheek style this book has superior information on mastering the art of a life of pleasure. Plus, it also includes some outstanding historical context. I dug it. You probably would too!
Golda Poretsky
Mar 17, 2012 rated it liked it
This is one of those books that's great for bathroom reading. It's lighthearted and has a great message about enjoying your life and valuing the really important stuff. I would have given it 4 stars but his historical examples are often just wrong, and it really irked me.
Jan 18, 2009 rated it really liked it
buku yang menyegarkan.
ah aku ingin membacanya lagi...
May 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Great combination of literary quotes, amusing graphics, and light reading.
Dec 15, 2010 rated it it was ok
Fairly entertaining. Lovely artwork. Several passages worth pondering, but overall, not very hedonistic.
Jun 15, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: lazy people who need validation or workaholics who need to chill
Shelves: humor
funny and entertaining but also a smart look at how our culture views productivity...but at what cost?
Jan 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Funny. Tongue in cheek, sure, but it'll still make you want to go out and buy yourself spa treatments and first-class plane tickets.
Oct 12, 2009 rated it liked it
Thin on history but generally a good read.
Mar 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
fun reminder of what is important and what is temporary.
Maggie Weber
Apr 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book gives me license to be the hedonist I've always attempted to suppress. The idea of following the path of what makes me lose track of time is now my mantra in life.
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“As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well spent brings happy death.” —Leonardo da Vinci” 1 likes
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