Beyond the surface: New personal development books

We are intricate beings, with complex emotions woven through a web of interconnected systems. This collection of books explores the vast tapestry of human experience, from navigating societal challenges to confronting personal grief. By celebrating our beautiful diversity and fostering connection within this complexity, we pave the path to true wellbeing and empowerment.

The Alternative: How to Build a Just Economy / Romeo, Nick
“While many still preach outdated economic dogmas, a growing number are rejecting these myths and reshaping economies around ethical values. Journalist Nick Romeo explores innovative models being implemented globally, from purpose-driven companies to climate budgeting to worker ownership. He outlines an alternative economic system structured around equity, sustainability and accountability that could work for everyone.” (Adapted from catalogue)

Fat Talk: Parenting in the Age of Diet Culture / Sole-Smith, Virginia
From a young age, kids internalize that being “fat” is bad and are pressured to pursue thinness by diet culture and weight-centric healthcare. ‘Fat Talk’ exposes how the war on “childhood obesity” has fuelled disordered eating and body hatred across all sizes. Drawing on research and personal accounts, the book argues to reclaim “fat” as not inherently unhealthy, stop trying to “prevent obesity,” and instead adopt a weight-inclusive approach that addresses societal fatphobia rather than viewing kids’ bodies as the problem. It provides an alternative framework for parenting around food and bodies.” (Adapted from catalogue)

How To Be: Life Lessons From The Early Greeks / Nicolson, Adam
“2,500 years ago, a few heroic individuals in small Mediterranean cities pioneered the beginnings of Western philosophy, casting off the dominance of god-kings and priests. Adam Nicolson takes readers on an expedition into these early innovative thinkers like Homer, Heraclitus, Xenophanes, Sappho and Pythagoras, who shaped ground-breaking ideas about the natural world, ethics, authenticity and the soul. Enhanced with visuals, it revisits the ancient philosophers’ fundamental questions about how to live and understand existence, shedding new light on the radical, investigative thought that formed the bedrock of Western philosophy.” (Adapted from catalogue)

How To Be Multiple: The Philosophy of Twins / De Bres, Helena
“Philosophy professor and identical twin Helena de Bres uses the fascinating and existentially puzzling experience of being a twin as a lens to re-examine profound philosophical questions. Drawing from her relationship with her twin sister Julia, and accompanied by Julia’s illustrations, Helena explores how society’s reactions to twins reveal deeper desires and fears about identity, free will, love, and human connection. With candour and humour, she argues that reflecting on twinhood can help all of us recognize our own multiplicity and approach life with greater curiosity, imagination and courage. The book examines twin representations across culture, their “freakish” history, and what it’s truly like to be one of two seemingly identical selves, ultimately using twinhood to rethink the limits of personhood, consciousness and justice.” (Adapted from catalogue)

Moving On Doesn’t Mean Letting Go: A Modern Guide to Navigating Loss / Moffa, Gina
“Grief therapist Gina Moffa offers a compassionate perspective on loss and grief. She acknowledges grief as an unpredictable, non-linear journey, normalizing each person’s individual momentum through the process – without toxic positivity that bypasses true healing. The book guides readers from surviving the initial shock of loss, through exercises for healing mind and body, to navigating grief online. It serves as a timely guide for tending to profound wounds. Moffa reminds us that we don’t have to choose between falling apart or staying strong – we can feel empowered by what we feared would consume us, while still holding onto hope. The book provides an understanding approach to the transformative experience of grief.” (Adapted from catalogue)

Rescuing Autonomy From Kant: A Marxist Critique of Kant’s Ethics / Furner, James
This provocative book explores the surprising connections between Kant’s moral philosophy of individual autonomy and the Marxist critique of capitalism. It argues that while Kant’s ethics rely on belief in God, autonomy can actually be better grounded through a Marxist analysis revealing the contradictions of capitalist systems. Rather than rejecting Kant, the book incorporates elements of his ethical theories into an updated moral framework informed by Marxism. It makes a case for socialist ideals as the true path to human freedom, dignity and community – values that capitalism ultimately undermines. This unique synthesis expands understanding of ethics and the quest for a better society for both philosophy devotees and those seeking social justice.” (Adapted from catalogue)

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