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On Wanting to Change

Adam Phillips


On Wanting to Change Download image

ISBN10: 0374172048
ISBN13: 9780374172046

Trade Paperback

160 Pages



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We live in a world in which we are invited to change—to become our best selves through politics, or fitness, or diet, or therapy. We change all the time—growing older and older—and how we think about change changes over time too.

We want to think of our lives as progress myths—as narratives of positive personal growth—at the same time as we inevitably age and suffer setbacks.

Adam Phillips’s sparkling book On Wanting to Change explores the stories we tell about change, and the changes we actually make—and the fact that they don’t always go, or come, together.


Praise for On Wanting to Change

"An inspiring vision of psychoanalysis."—The Guardian

Reviews from Goodreads


Read an Excerpt

Conversion Hysteria


What is heartening about people is the appalling stubbornness and the strong roots of their various cultures, rather than the ease with which you can convert them and make them happy and good.


About the author

Adam Phillips

Adam Phillips, formerly a principal child psychotherapist at Charing Cross Hospital, London, is a practicing psychoanalyst and a visiting professor in the English Department at the University of York. He is the author of numerous works of psychoanalysis and literary criticism, including Missing Out, In Writing, and Unforbidden Pleasures. A frequent contributor to the London Review of Books, he is the general editor of the Penguin Modern Classics Freud translations and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Jerry Bauer

Adam Phillips