When Life Calls Out to Us: The Love and Lifework of Viktor and Elly Frankl

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9780385500371: When Life Calls Out to Us: The Love and Lifework of Viktor and Elly Frankl

“The only authorized biography of Victor Frankl, whose life story and reflections have inspired tens of millions. Haddon Klingberg records and preserves the Frankl legacy, with his own eloquent and moving reflections.” -- David G. Myers, Hope College, author of The American Paradox: Spiritual Hunger in an Age of Plenty

Written in response to the horrors he experienced and witnessed during the Holocaust, Viktor Frankl’s landmark book, Man’s Search for Meaning, has sold millions of copies and been translated into twenty-seven languages. But although Frankl’s thought and philosophy have been widely analyzed, until now little has been written about his life, and about the deeply loving, intensely spiritual relationship that led him and his wife to dedicate their lives to reducing pain and oppression in the world.

In a book that is at once a wonderful love story and a tribute to two extraordinary people, Haddon Klingberg, Jr., draws on a wealth of anecdotes, told to him by the Frankls themselves, to describe their separate early lives and their fifty-two years as husband and wife. Returning to Vienna after spending three years in four different concentration camps, Frankl, whose first wife and family died in the camps, turned to writing as a way of finding some purpose in his life. But it was Elly Schwindt, a woman half his age, who helped him put the pieces of his broken life together. Married in 1947, the Frankls created a life of hope and faith, a life committed to proclaiming the oneness of the human family, challenging materialistic values, and encouraging the pursuit of meaning.

When Life Calls Out to Us chronicles a spiritual journey infused with tragedy but sustained by love, wisdom, faith, and humor. Klingberg’s extensive interviews, not available anywhere else, reveal the full richness of the Frankls’ lives and beautifully illuminate their enduring contributions toward a better world for all people.
From the Hardcover edition.

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Review:

After three years in four concentration camps during World War II, Jewish neurologist Victor Frankl returned to Vienna to resume his medical practice. When he met an operating room assistant named Elly, it was "love at first eyesight," and over the next five decades, their romance, described in When Life Calls Out to Us, helped inspire the development of Frankl's famous philosophy of logotherapy. For this book, the Frankls cooperated fully with author Haddon Klingberg Jr., a psychologist who conducted hundreds of hours of interviews, extensively researched the Holocaust, and mastered all of Frankl's primary publications (most notably Man's Search for Meaning. Unfortunately, Klingberg is also gaga for his subjects, fetishizing every detail of their lives. (Victor loved Captain Kangaroo and MacDonald's cheeseburgers "minus the mushy bread.") Readers already enamored of the Frankls will likely be entranced by the book; the rest may wish Klingberg had better emulated the linguistic skills of his hero, whose text, he says, were "sophisticated, yet precise and plain. No pointless words. No petty chatter." --Michael Joseph Gross

About the Author:

HADDON KLINGBERG, JR., is a clinical psychologist and a professor of psychology at North Park University in Chicago. In addition to a Ph.D. from the Fuller Graduate School of Psychology, he earned a degree in biblical studies and studied with Viktor Frankl in Vienna in the early 1960s. For twenty years, he was president of Klingberg Family Centers in Connecticut. He lives in Evanston, Illinois.

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Klingberg Jr., Haddon
Editorial: Image (2002)
ISBN 10: 0385500378 ISBN 13: 9780385500371
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