Solitude

In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World

by

Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World

‘An elegant, thoughtful book . . . beautifully expresses the importance and experience of liberation from the battery-hen life of constant connection and crowds.’ Daily Mail

‘A compelling study of the subtle ways in which modern life and technologies have transformed our behaviour and sense of self.’ Times Literary Supplement

In a world of social media and smartphones, true solitude has become increasingly hard to find. In this timely and important book, award-winning writer Michael Harris reveals why our hyper-connected society makes time alone more crucial than ever. He delves into the latest neuroscience to examine the way innovations like Google Maps and Facebook are eroding our ability to be by ourselves. He tells the stories of the remarkable people – from pioneering computer scientists to great nineteenth-century novelists – who managed to find solitude in the most unexpected of places. And he explores how solitude can bring clarity and creativity to each of our inner lives. Urgent, eloquent and beautifully argued, Solitude might just change the way you think about being alone.


‘Speaks to a long-overdue conversation we still haven’t properly had in our society.’ Vice

‘A timely, elegant provocation to daydream and wander.’ Nathan Filer, author of The Shock of the Fall

‘The leading thinker about technology’s corrupting influence on our collective psyche.’ Newsweek

‘A poetic, contemplative journey into the benefits of solo sojourning.’ Elle

  • Random House; April 2017
  • ISBN 9781473535572
  • Read online, or download in secure EPUB format
  • Title: Solitude
  • Author: Michael Harris
  • Imprint: Cornerstone Digital

In The Press

"A compelling study of the subtle ways in which modern life and technologies have transformed our behaviour and sense of self . . . The strength of Harris’s argument lies in his showing how seemingly harmless new technologies insidiously influence our ways of being . . . Harris proposes ways in which we can discover ourselves within an increasingly digitally connected world."

About The Author

Michael Harris is the author of The End of Absence, which won the Governor General’s Literary Award for Non-Fiction and became a national bestseller in Canada. He writes about media, civil liberties and the arts for dozens of publications, including the Washington Post, Wired, Salon and the Globe and Mail. He lives in Vancouver.