Universal language

The role of art in our lives

Universal language

Art as Therapy

by Alain de Botton and John Armstrong

Phaidon, $45 hb, 240 pp, 9780714865911

Art, in all its diverse manifestations, from storytelling to picture-making, from singing and dancing to poetry, is as distinctive and universal an activity of the human mind as language. It is, in essence, a way of thinking about the world, of shaping experience as it is felt to be and reshaping it as it could be, that long predates the development of rational reflection. Stories have been told for thousands of years, perhaps tens of thousands; philosophical and scientific thought begins, for practical purposes, around 2500 years ago.

Read the rest of this article by purchasing a subscription to ABR Online, or subscribe to the print edition to receive access to ABR Online free of charge.

If you are a single issue subscriber you will need to upgrade your subscription to view back issues.

If you are already subscribed, click here to log in.

Published in February 2014 no. 358
Christopher Allen

Christopher Allen

Christopher Allen is currently Senior Master in Academic Extension at Sydney Grammar School. He is the national art critic for The Australian.
More in this issue « Twinned lives Melbourne Now »

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to comments@australianbookreview.com.au. We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.