We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
Man's Search for Meaning | [Viktor E. Frankl]

Man's Search for Meaning

Internationally renowned psychiatrist, Viktor E. Frankl, endured years of unspeakable horror in Nazi death camps. During, and partly because of his suffering, Dr. Frankl developed a revolutionary approach to psychotherapy known as logotherapy. At the core of his theory is the belief that man's primary motivational force is his search for meaning.
Regular Price:$13.97
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Internationally renowned psychiatrist, Viktor E. Frankl, endured years of unspeakable horror in Nazi death camps. During, and partly because of, his suffering, Dr. Frankl developed a revolutionary approach to psychotherapy known as logotherapy. At the core of his theory is the belief that man's primary motivational force is his search for meaning.

Man's Search for Meaning is more than a story of Viktor E. Frankl's triumph: it is a remarkable blend of science and humanism and an introduction to the most significant psychological movement of our day.

©1959, 1962, 1984 Viktor E. Frankl; (P)1995 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"An enduring work of survival literature." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (2185 )
5 star
 (1313)
4 star
 (578)
3 star
 (206)
2 star
 (59)
1 star
 (29)
Overall
4.6 (1144 )
5 star
 (810)
4 star
 (229)
3 star
 (77)
2 star
 (19)
1 star
 (9)
Story
4.4 (1131 )
5 star
 (641)
4 star
 (336)
3 star
 (113)
2 star
 (26)
1 star
 (15)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Ann Marie Kamloops, BC, Canada 12-27-04
    Ann Marie Kamloops, BC, Canada 12-27-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    36
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "I will isten again and again"

    The beginning of this book deals with the author's time in concentration camps, and the descriptions are all to the purpose of tracing his observations, which he later builds his theory of logotherapy on. Thus, the descriptions are not horrifying for horrors sake, but serve to educate one regarding the way these experiences were able to be withstood.

    There were a few surprises in this book as well. He mentions logotherapy, and paradoxical intention, in relation to its use in treatment for people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, among other things.

    Most importantly, to myself, were the ways he showed how he had developed his ideas on man's search for meaning. These are ideas that he himself used to save his life while enduring four concentration camps. They are not ideals plucked out of the ether and argued with only intellect.

    The narrator has a European accent, which I cannot place, but which added greatly to my listening experience. Sometimes the ideas flow thick and fast and it is a challenge to keep up while also taking in completely the ideas you just heard.

    This is a book I will listen to repeatedly and learn from on each occassion.

    36 of 37 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Miroslaw LodzPoland 12-11-08
    Miroslaw LodzPoland 12-11-08 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    142
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    58
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    "Between stimulus and response, there is a space..."

    "Man's Search for Meaning" is the great summary of Frankl's view on life. Sold in 10 million copies - the book has two distinct parts - the first is a kind of memoir of the horrible time Frankl spent in at least four concentration camps during II World War, including Auschwitz. From all written stories about the life in camp - Frankl's relation is astonishing - there are no gruesome scenes, no ghastly relations - but through some cold description of prisoners shock, apathy, bitterness and finally deformation of morals - Frankl's account is one of the most fearful stories I have ever read. Yet, there is still a small light of humanness, still a germ of meaning in all these atrocities. Let's read: "We have come to know man as he really is. After all, man is that being who invented the gas chambers of Auschwitz; however, he is also that being who entered those gas chambers upright, with the Lord's prayer or the Shema Yisrael on his lips."

    The second part of the book deals with his LOGOTHERAPY - the fundamental theory Frankl promoted in XX century. Logotherapy seeks the cure for neurosis and existential emptiness in the search for meaning in life. There are passages in the book, also those about love and its importance that make one shiver....

    Let's read two citations from this great book:

    "An incurable psychotic individual may lose his usefulness but yet retain the dignity of a human being. This is my psychiatric credo."

    "Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom."

    29 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leerkkee Australia 01-14-05
    Leerkkee Australia 01-14-05 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    95
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    468
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    "Humbling"

    All the other people that have reviewed this book have captured the content of the book very well. The only thing I have to add is that this is a book about an extraordinary man, with all of the horror he was subjected to he still remained a wonderful human. He is not bitter and does not hate the people who subjected him to these unspeakable acts, instead he tries to find the good or humor in their acts.

    This book humbled me; I used to get upset when someone took my parking spot, or cut into my queue but now I smile as I have never had to endure real horror or injustice.

    34 of 36 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Atlanta, GA, USA 11-30-04
    Kevin Atlanta, GA, USA 11-30-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    40
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Great Book!"

    I got this book after Dr. Phil said he has read and re-read it several times in his life. While I'm not always a Dr. Phil fan, I think he has it right with this one. It's one of the few books I consistently recommend to anyone. Very insightful, unbiased, and amazing the he has actually lived what he learned and vice versa.

    40 of 44 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Dallas, TX, USA 11-14-04
    William Dallas, TX, USA 11-14-04 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    33
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    40
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "Insightful and Illuminating. Foundational."

    I had not heard of Dr. Frankle, but listening to his story and the lessons learned about human nature provided profound insight, and created a sense of this man's permanent prominence in the field of Psychiatry. The practical examples of filling man's "existential vacuum" with meaning were extremely useful. Some of the stuff toward the end is a bit difficult to follow, but overall, I found this book to be serendipitously foundational to my next read which was Covey's "Seven Habits." Perhaps it should be a pre-requisite to the study of Covey.

    15 of 16 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Marietta, GA, United States 11-18-07
    Paul Marietta, GA, United States 11-18-07 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    45
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    139
    11
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "hard too read, but important"

    As stated in my title, this is not the easiest book to read. First time I picked it up (paper version), I found myself unable to read it prior to bedtime, because of the vivid horror deplicted.
    But, if you want to get insight into to man's ability to survive the unsurvivable, endure the unendurable, listen to this book.
    Also, it gives first hand insight into the horrors of Germany's concentration camps during the 2nd WW.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ulrich munich, NY, USA 12-16-04
    Ulrich munich, NY, USA 12-16-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    243
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    36
    34
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    "Wonderful!"

    Viktor Frankl's book has two main parts: a) very moving description of his experiences in different concentration camps and how he dealt with suffering and pain; b) an introduction of his school of psychotherapy ("logotherapy")partly derived from these experiences.
    Really inspiring, even if today you are not suffering. Great help to remember in difficult times.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melinda UT 01-07-13
    Melinda UT 01-07-13 Member Since 2009

    So hooked by audio that I have to read books aloud. *If my reviews help, please let me know.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    8132
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    582
    235
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4365
    11
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too Much Wisdom for 1 Reading"

    Since Frankl published Man's Search for Meaning there have been 4 revisions on the DSM; (I began working in the field during the DSMIII). Our understanding, diagnostic tools, and treatment therapies broaden, but there is still so much that needs to be done and known to treat *mental illnesses* --especially the stigma people have to deal with, and the issue of parity. Through all the enlightenment, I still find this book invaluable and profound. For myself, I include a reading in my list of annual maintenance. You don't need another review...I'm offering a REMINDER...read again.

    24 of 28 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lindblad Handen, Sweden 09-06-11
    Lindblad Handen, Sweden 09-06-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    52
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    10
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    18
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing story, amazing man, intriguing insights"

    If I had to choose a must-read-list this one would be a sure candidate. It has the ability to touch you in so many levels. There is not only the insights into and behind the scenes from "the horrors of concentration camps", but a personal story of struggle and contemplation. All of this in the light of his own theories about us humans, what drives us and how we may search for happiness. I would like to recommend this book to you with my deepest conviction it holds true wisdom!

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 12-20-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
    110
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    98
    19
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    "Invaluable path to a meaningful life"

    Frankel's account of his concentration experience is not as moving as those of Elie Wiesel, but the second half of the book on logotherapy draws together the threads of that experience into a structure for treating patients struggling with the existential crisis of life's meaning. Frankel, the founder of logotherapy (meaning therapy), is with Freud and Adler one of the primary Viennese psychiatrists of the 20th century. For Freud sexual conflicts were key to understanding mental turmoil. For Adler it was the struggle for personal power and superiority. Frankel thought that mental conflicts arose from a desire to know the why of existence. He thought that if we know the why we can live with any what. He said the why is clear if we can love someone and if we can work at something we enjoy.
    The concentration camp experience also taught Frankel that he had control over his thoughts and feelings. No SS soldier could change his thoughts. He could always go somewhere in his mind. Frankel foreshadowed the present day's psychology of "think it and you will feel it."

    18 of 21 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 103 results PREVIOUS1211NEXT
Sort by:
  • R
    Ilford, Essex, United Kingdom
    5/3/08
    Overall
    "Throw out your self-help books!"

    This is an utterly remarkable book for so many reasons. What strikes me most about it is how it really gives meaning to the idea that the whole can be greater than the sum of its parts. What I mean by this is the following: the book is not great psychology, nor great philosophy nor even great narrative. And yet, as a whole I would call it a great book. Why? Because it makes a definitive impact. I cannot say that I walked away from this book unchanged. I suppose it is Viktor Frankl himself who makes all the difference -- in him you find a truly humane, humble and ultimately wise human being. I was truly impressed to hear him quoting Nietzsche while in a concentration camp; this at a time when Nietzsche's work had been distorted and used to promote anti-semitism by the Nazis. One warning though -- his existentialist philosophy is outdated and really needs to be complemented by a contemporary understanding of human nature.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Jim Vaughan
    Malvern, UK
    12/2/12
    Overall
    "Potentially life changing..."

    So, we all know about the Holocaust, yet this book is a bit different - told with such "tragic optimism" that the message is not moral outrage or repulsion, but of meaning in the midst of unimaginable degradation. The "why" that makes the "how" of suffering bearable. Frankle quotes Nietzsche throughout.



    The most moving passages for me were his imagined conversations with his wife, (who probably by that time was dead), which nonetheless gave him the purpose for continuing to live, and the glimpses of Nature, such as sunsets, raw in beauty, beyond the barbed wire.



    His message is simple - it is in loving the people we love and in the struggle that our lives demand of us, that we find meaning that transcends the mere pleasure principle. Our own "ontic logos" is individually uncovered, not found through intellectual introspection on "THE meaning of life" (which is a nonsense and which usually just leads to neurosis).



    Frankle highlights the contemporary consumerist "tyranny of happiness", which is endemic in the West, so that many patients feel not just unhappy, but deeply ashamed of their unhappiness.



    Existentialism is not popular in the zeitgeist, but I think we can learn much from that generation who lived through the War, and the Holocaust, and developed such philosophies of coping with terrible hardship and suffering. By contrast, we can be very superficial, and self centred, and it left me considering what issues I cared about enough to take action on. Would I regret not doing so otherwise? Yes, probably - as an opportunity wasted!



    This is a humane, inspiring, potentially life changing book; well narrated, subtle, profound and unpretentious. It deserves the highest rating.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Marc
    Elvanfoot, United Kingdom
    11/14/11
    Overall
    "Philosophy at its best"

    This is not an easy read, not because of language - Frankl is clear, concise and easy to follow, but because he is exploring meaning from the most extreme angles. Using his experience as a survivor of Nazi concentration camps in the most honest and frank fashion I have ever heard/read anybody describing such experiences, Frankl finds profound truths in regard of meaning and the human condition.
    His conclusions are very sobering and profound and exactly because of his experience very insightful and inspiring. (As I have seen people referencing this book as indication that Frankl was religious, I would like to mention that in my reading, he dismantles religion as a means of self deception, even if maybe helpful to remain sane under extreme circumstances. I.e. I understand this book as clear statement against the validity of any truths or meaning for our lives coming from religion.)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. Steven Jackson
    England
    6/27/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very good. Interesting, moving and well produced"

    This is a very good audio book. The story is very interesting, moving and thought provoking and the narration matches it perfectly.
    I recommend this. The only change I would make is that the narrator when reading dialogue assumes a mock Jewish / German accent which isn't a big deal but to my ear sounded strange.
    I'll definitely be listening to this multiple times.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    Tadworth, United Kingdom
    6/5/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Inspiring"

    Highly recommended. Great depth, sincerity and intelligence. Well read. I found this quite life changing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Victoria
    Tuapse, Russia
    12/19/12
    Overall
    "The great book!"

    The great book! It cannot be listened to without comprehensive attention and understanding each word. Every single word, every phrase is meaningful and gives a new way of living!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    ALCESTER, United Kingdom
    7/25/11
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    I would wholeheartedly recommend this book. Both parts, the autobiography, and the introduction to Frankl's logotherapy, gave me much to think about. I will be buying this in print also, having now listened to the audio. It's that good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    11/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "eye opening and insightful"
    Would you listen to Man's Search for Meaning again? Why?

    Yes, I feel that on hearing it again it's probably one of those books that you take something newhich from each time. One'size perspective may change or simply may see something new.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Frankl teaches us to be hopeful


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance – was your favourite?

    Viktor Frankl as he teaches many life lessons here.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I found that there are decent people in all walks of life and those who looked out for Frankl really moved me - it shows that there are people who make humanity beautiful.


    Any additional comments?

    I would suggest this should be recommended reading for all school kids learning about the world wars as it offers a different perspective and gives a lot of life lessons in this short book it really makes you think. I would also like to see a lot more adults reading it as it may lead to people respecting and caring for each other more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Di
    8/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful, moving and meaningful"

    What makes this book wonderful and very touching is the personal story of the author's own suffering during the Holocaust, and as a prisoner in Auschwitz. But somehow this book gives you the feeling that it is also personalized to you, like your own session of logotherpary. This is because it really makes you think about the meaning of life, and inevitably, you find yourself looking into your own experiences and feelings, in the past and present. Victor Frankl seems to have an incredibly humanistic approach to existential analysis, incredibly respectful to people's own beliefs and situations. I like the way he explains suffering, and the fact, that there is no measure to it, but one could find a meaning. I would definitely be reading further about logotherapy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Immanuel
    Verwood
    5/15/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Greatful for the insight and meaning"
    Any additional comments?

    An amazing teasure of a book. Was a thought provocking read with much applicable-ness to inner thoughts and feelings. It truely is a must for those looking / scolars of life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 11 results PREVIOUS12NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.