Everything is F*cked: A Book About Hopeby Published 14 May 2019
|Everything is F*cked: A Book About Hope.pdf|
From the author of the international mega-bestseller The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck comes a counterintuitive guide to the problems of hope.
We live in an interesting time. Materially, everything is the best it’s ever been—we are freer, healthier and wealthier than any people in human history. Yet, somehow everything seems to be irreparably and horribly f*cked—the planet is warming, governments are failing, economies are collapsing, and everyone is perpetually offended on Twitter. At this moment in history, when we have access to technology, education and communication our ancestors couldn’t even dream of, so many of us come back to an overriding feeling of hopelessness.
What’s going on? If anyone can put a name to our current malaise and help fix it, it’s Mark Manson. In 2016, Manson published The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck, a book that brilliantly gave shape to the ever-present, low-level hum of anxiety that permeates modern living. He showed us that technology had made it too easy to care about the wrong things, that our culture had convinced us that the world owed us something when it didn’t—and worst of all, that our modern and maddening urge to always find happiness only served to make us unhappier. Instead, the “subtle art” of that title turned out to be a bold challenge: to choose your struggle; to narrow and focus and find the pain you want to sustain. The result was a book that became an international phenomenon, selling millions of copies worldwide while becoming the #1 bestseller in 13 different countries.
Now, in Everthing Is F*cked, Manson turns his gaze from the inevitable flaws within each individual self to the endless calamities taking place in the world around us. Drawing from the pool of psychological research on these topics, as well as the timeless wisdom of philosophers such as Plato, Nietzsche, and Tom Waits, he dissects religion and politics and the uncomfortable ways they have come to resemble one another. He looks at our relationships with money, entertainment and the internet, and how too much of a good thing can psychologically eat us alive. He openly defies our definitions of faith, happiness, freedom—and even of hope itself.
With his usual mix of erudition and where-the-f*ck-did-that-come-from humor, Manson takes us by the collar and challenges us to be more honest with ourselves and connected with the world in ways we probably haven’t considered before. It’s another counterintuitive romp through the pain in our hearts and the stress of our soul. One of the great modern writers has produced another book that will set the agenda for years to come.
Everything is F*cked: A Book About Hope Reviews
I really wanted to like this book. As a fan of Mark Manson, I enjoyed his at-times comical writing style and humorous anecdotes in his other books. Yet, this felt stale.
The book is lazy. It's essentially a bunch of repackaged Nietzsche and Harari stuffed together without any flow whatsoever. The central theme of hope acts as a loose umbrella topic to otherwise disconnected chapters.
The book talks about subjects right out of Sapiens and Homo Deus by Yuval Harari. The only difference is that Manson inserts his unique voice in this commentary, including a lot of 'f*cks.' Sounds great right? Not exactly. The subjects are oversimplified, the language feels condescending at times, and the charm that Manson usually puts on in his books was nonexistent.
What made Manson's earlier books good was that he spoke from experience about topics he was passionate about. But this attempt into deeper subjects doesn't cut it. It is neither comprehensive nor original. It's just not as good as other books in its field.
TL/DR: Just read Harari and Nietzsche.
Something is very wrong with the world. It’s us. We have abandoned our quest for character in favour of one for happiness and we have created a world of diversions that give the illusion of freedom but in fact keep us docile and imprisoned.
Manson has written a book that will stay with me for a while. This very well-researched exploration into human virtues (and hope in particular) isn’t exactly warm and fuzzy. Nor is it pessimistic. In fact it is paradoxically optimistic for a book that genuinely and convincingly lays out that everything is indeed f*cked!
His trademark wit is still on display but Manson strikes a slightly more academic tone than in his first book, which was a welcome change of pace. In fact this book has inspired me to learn more about Manson’s (and the world’s) philosophical greats and read a few of his sources. I think that’s a good thing.
Manson, once again, holds a mirror up to the reader, which can be confronting (in a good way), and makes demands on us to be better. Not merely hope to be better. But BE better. And that’s a message I can get behind.
Give this book a go...
Smart and funny, this book will help you make sense of your mind and the world we live in
If you liked Subtle Art, you'll enjoy this too. I couldn't put it down, actually, reading it in under a day.
Mark has a talent for taking potentially boring subject matter, such as the teachings of philosophers, and bringing it to life in easy-to-understand language (with plenty of expletives).
I especially liked his Consciousness Car metaphor in explaining the Thinking Brain vs Feeling Brain (would love to see an animated cartoon version), and thoughts on antifragility and how we benefit by choosing to accept (and even seek out) discomfort in our lives.
If you've been feeling like the world is a mess (especially in terms of politics) lately, this book can help you make sense of what's going on. And, it includes some takeaways we as individuals can use to help make a positive difference for ourselves, and by extension, society.
The book was a meaningless string of random thoughts and stoic philosophy and meditation. It was funny at parts, but mostly just a few interesting stories and cliches that are set up as being new insight. Also, I don't buy stoicism and meditation as a way forward. I am still interested in progress and I do think social movements can make people's lives better. Manson seems to think it's all just vain showing off and we should all just chill, but life isn't about peace and happiness. We also search meaning.
Arg, it's really difficult for me to rate this a 3-star. (UPDATE after more thought and discussion, this isn't a 3-star, it's a 2-star)
This isn't a "book" in my opinion. It's more of a collection of essays, "blog posts" and articles you'd see on HuffPo (or perhaps NPR).
There are some parts of the 'book' that were well researched, provided excellent points and I thought to myself "oh wow" and "I'm going to have to read this again!!!" Then there were other parts that I was like "WHAT IS THIS?" and "WHY IS THIS HERE?"
The writing also oscillated between deplorable to somewhat academic.
There are times where it reads like a polished, academic book but more often it is ranty with slang like "Cray cray" and vulgar examples that Manson seems to slip in for shock value except it doesn't work.
Manson is also a terrible narrator. His voice isn't just bleh, but he can't even seem to properly read his own writing--he can't deliver his own jokes and punchlines. It comes out awkward and unnatural-- making his "cray cray" and other slang even more distracting.
I also kept having a revolving thought, "DAMN THIS IS SOME RICH WHITE MALE PRIVILEGE & MANSPLAINING" not that the subjects he approached where "white male privilege shit" (though there is some of that) but that he seems to overlook privilege quite a bit.
Yet there were some parts of the book that I thought were excellent, though most of them were rehashing from other outstanding books I've read such as Thinking, Fast and Slow, Ryan Holiday/Stoicism, Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress or anything by Pinkner, Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard or anything by Chip & Dan Heath, plus Nietzsche & Plato. His last bit on AI was interesting, though I suspect that was parlayed from somewhere/someone else.