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Book discussion: The hidden pleasures of Life by Theodore Zeldin

Hosted by the Consul of the Beijing Book Reading Group
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Took place 2 months ago
Sun 25 Oct 18:00 - 20:00

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Let’s take advantage of technology and the use we learnt after the recent isolation…Let’s meet up virtually on ZOOM … to discuss a very inspiring book and have fun!

The Hidden Pleasures of Life: A New Way of Remembering the Past and Imagining the Future
by Theodore Zeldin

The story of a search for a new art of living. How can one escape from work colleagues who are bores and from organisations that thrive on stress? What new priorities can people give to their private lives? When the romantic ideal is disappointing, how else can affections be cultivated? If only a few can become rich, what substitute is there for dropping out? If religions and nations disagree, what other outcomes are possible beyond strife or doubt? Where there is too little freedom, what is the alternative to rebellion? When so much is unpredictable, what can replace ambition?

Questions include: What is the great adventure of our time? What is a wasted life? How can people lose their illusions about themselves? What alternatives are there to being a rebel? What can the poor tell the rich? What could the rich tell the poor? How many ways of committing suicide are there? How can an unbeliever understand a believer? How can a religion change? How can prejudices be overcome? How can one think about the future, without trying to predict it or worrying about it? Is ridicule the most effective form of non-violent protest? How does one acquire a sense of humour?