Reflection Paper Search for Man's Meaning
1286 WordsSep 30th, 20126 Pages
A Critical Book Review of Man’s Search for Meaning
Silver Lake College
Instructor Diane Weiland August 19, 2012
Introduction Man’s Search for Meaning, is a biography and the personal memoir of Victor Frankl’s experience in a Nazi Concentration Camp. The book was initially published in 1946 in German and was then published in 1959 in English, under the title From Death-Camp to Existentialism. Prior to World War II, Victor Frankl was a psychiatrist working in Vienna and then later was responsible for running the neurology department at a Jewish Hospital in Rothschild. In 1942 he and his family were arrested and deported. They were separated and sent to concentration…show more content…
His book details many examples of his theory and how it has helped many people improve their life, survive tragedies, as well as documents how it kept him alive throughout three years of physical and mental suffering while imprisoned. He also discusses how to find the meaning in one’s life as well as the tribulations that he and others went through once liberated. Author’s Arguments Frankl believes several things, and he shares these theories with his readers. First of all; the basic concept of Logotherapy is that if one finds a purpose or a meaning in their life they can endure anything. He supports this many times over with specific examples. He was forced to dig trenches in freezing cold weather without adequate clothing and shoes. The shoes might be too tight causing pain and blisters, he may have no socks, or the shoes might have holes in them, allowing the ice and snow to get against his skin. He states that he got through these long, painful days by thinking about the beauty of nature or thoughts of his wife. He focused on the unlikely fact that his wife might be alive, giving him the will to live. Other times, while at another camp where he worked as the only doctor caring for 52 sick and dying patients, he himself was on the brink of starvation and typhus and he did not give up. He felt that it was his duty to care for these people, keep them comfortable and give them the best that he could at the time with minimal resources. There might have
Essay Topic 1
What informs the principles of logotherapy? Did anything beyond the personal experiences of the author influence this theory? How does Frankl's life experience and example embody or exemplify the principles of logotherapy? What do you see as the strengths and weaknesses of this theory? What do therapists practicing logotherapy do for their patients? What is the aim in logotherapy?
Essay Topic 2
Frankl's description of life in camp deals mostly with his own experience and the experiences of the men he was surrounded by. Women and children are nearly absent. Describe how you imagine life for a woman or child living under these circumstances might be different. Do you believe they would live through the same mental stages?
Essay Topic 3
Frankl describes three distinct phases in the mental life of the prisoners he lived with in concentration camps. What characterizes each of these phases? Do you believe...
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