Tuesday 21 May 2019


David Brooks

The Second Mountain: the quest for a moral life

The world tells us we should pursue self-interest: career wins, high status, nice things. But at some point, in our lives, we may find that we’re not interested in what other people tell us to want. We want the things that are truly worth wanting. This is the second mountain, when life moves from self-centered to other­ centered.

What does it mean to look beyond yourself and find a moral cause? To forget about independence and discover dependence – to be utterly enmeshed in a web of warm relationships?

In The Second Mountain David Brooks explores the meaning and possibilities that scaling a second mountain offer us, and the four commitments that most commonly move us there: family, vocation, philosophy and community.

He looks at a range of people who have embraced the necessity of dependence and have lived joyous, committed lives. He gathers their wisdom on how to choose a partner, how to pick a vocation, how to live out a philosophy, and how we can begin to integrate our commitments into one overriding purpose.

David Brooks

David is one of America’s most prominent political and cultural commentators. He writes a bi-weekly OpEd column for the New York Times and is a regular analyst on PBS NewsHour and on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered.

Currently on faculty at Yale University, David holds honorary degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, Dartmouth University, Arizona State University, Williams College, New York University, Brandeis University, Occidental College, among others. In 2010, he became a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

His two most recent books, The Road to Character and The Social Animal, became #1 NYT bestsellers.

"David Brooks is one of the most prominent public intellectuals of our time"

The Washington Post