The School of Life was founded by Alain de Botton in 2008, dedicated to developing emotional intelligence. It is now open in London, Paris, Amsterdam, Melbourne and for a short month, a pop up version of the same was open in Perth. Classes, workshops, therapies and coffees were serviced.
I just so happened to be walking past William Street on Friday afternoon, killing a bit of time before meeting up with two friends for dinner. I had wanted to revisit and spend more time perusing the books, objects and tools on show and on offer but unfortunately it was in its last week. The School of Life workshops were run by the School of Life Project Team, with the help of philosophers, writers and artists.
An assortment of twenty events were hosted over ten weeks, "How to be Confident", "Ethics and Ego", "How to find a job you love" and "The pleasures and virtues of exercise" were just some of the talks and classes covered. They were designed to give insight around common themes in life and much like a tutorial at university, the classes challenged attendees to think deeply about the issues that matter most with other open-minded individuals.
Open, simplistic and inevitably a pop up, The School of Life at 224 William Street was something that caught my eye. The toolkits for life with interesting titles such as "How to care less about money" and the aphorisms were key objects of note. Notable authors like Milan Kundera and Alain himself were carefully placed among the books and gifts sections, with other gifts including a hundred different questions to ask yourself in order to more positively change your outlook on the world and re-evaluate your self.
I think what drew me in (along with most other people) was the fact that the content and the toolkits relate to topics we care intrinsically about: work/career, family, travel, self, politics, relationships. My bookshelf itself has been comprised of Alain de Botton's books that I had bought a few months ago and after visiting The School of Life I'm even more inclined to re-read them.