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Book details
  • SubGenre:Inspiration & Personal Growth
  • Language:English
  • Pages:85
  • eBook ISBN:9781483522081

The Art of Being Alive - Revisited (Annotated)

Success Through Thought

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

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Even in the early 1900's people were concerned about self improvement and self development and this book displays that people have always tried to better themselves. A very intriguing book that proves that self development is indeed not a modern affair, but how much have things changed? Read "The Art of Being Alive - Revisited" and you just might be pleasantly surprised!


I found this book in an antique shop in Fremantle, Australia and picked it up, out of curiosity. When I flicked through the pages I was fascinated by the clarity and relevance of the few sentences I had read. I asked myself: “More than one hundred years ago they had already books about self-development?” I was so absorbed, I decided to buy the book.

I continued reading and wondered who this person, who this author, was. I did some research and what I found fascinated me even more. For example, a book review of 1914 by Walter de la Mare, published by “The Times Literary Supplement,” states the following:"...fragments that remain rather than by the elixir they have wasted and the miracle it represents.” Or this: “She heartily denounces the get-rich-quick method of financiering.” For those inquisitive minds, the whole book review text is contained in the notes, see for yourself and you will find that it indeed makes an interesting read.

Until I came across this book, somehow I had this belief that self-improvement and self-help books are a sign of our modern times. As this book is testimony, the whole subject of self-improvement goes back a long time and people had always tried to better themselves and even then already, wanted to improve their lives.  I was also surprised to learn how little has changed in one hundred years. For example in the chapter, “Modern Marriage”, Ella Wheeler Wilcox writes: “WHY the contention, the separations, the ever-increasing ratio of divorces that follow the marriages of to-day? In short, what is the matter with the modern marriage?”

There are many more examples how Ella’s writing is still relevant here and now, therefore I decided it would be a loss if her thoughts were not exposed to other people who are interested in self-improvement and never have had the opportunity to read her thoughts on this subject.

About the author

Ella Wheeler Wilcox (November 5, 1850 – October 30, 1919) was an American author and poet. Other published works by her: 

* Poems of Passion

* The Way Of The World, this contains the lines, "Laugh, and the world laughs with you; Weep, and you weep alone".

Her autobiography, The Worlds and I, was published in 1918, a year before her death.

Ella Wheeler was born in 1850 on a farm in Johnstown, Wisconsin, east of Janesville, the youngest of four children. The family soon moved north of Madison. She started writing poetry at a very early age, and was well known as a poet in her own state by the time she graduated from high school.