Three stories <about> <from> my life

JorgeSoñador

Senior Member
Spanish - Mexico
Hi everyone,
Given the following sentences:

1. Today I want to tell you three stories about my life.
2. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life.

What's the meaning being expressed by "about" and "from"?

Thanks in advance,
Jorge
 
  • much_rice

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Three stories from my life means three stories that describe things you have experienced or seen.
    Three stories about my life means three stories that describe your life itself, its essence or major themes.

    The two are quite similar. Stories from the life of a great explorer, like Thomas Cook, might be mostly about the native peoples he met or the lands he visited. Three stories about Cook's life would tell more about the man himself.
     

    Steven David

    Senior Member
    General American English USA - Standard
    Hi everyone,
    Given the following sentences:

    1. Today I want to tell you three stories about my life.
    2. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life.

    What's the meaning being expressed by "about" and "from"?

    Thanks in advance,
    Jorge
    ... three stories about my life <

    This means events, situations, or circumstances surrounding your life. And from these events, situations, circumstances, you get stories. Three stories are relevant to your life and have something to do with your life.

    ... three stories from my life <

    This means that three stories belong to your life and therefore come from your life. Three stories are taken from your life experiences.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Of the two sentences in the OP, “stories about my life” would make more sense if it’s said by someone giving an informal talk to a small audience, about their lifestyle or occupation or travels or whatever.

    Stories of my life is much more formal and sounds too grand for such a scenario. But there are lots of published books (usually biographies) with titles that begin or include “Stories from the life of [either a named individual or a specific type of person]”.

    Either phrase could be applied to the sort of life events or humorous incidents that famous people might recount in their memoirs.
     

    JorgeSoñador

    Senior Member
    Spanish - Mexico
    2. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life.
    By the way, I took this sentence from the Commencement Speech by Steve Jobs at Stanford University.

    Here is the context:

    I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I nev er graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. <-----Excess quote removed by moderator (Florentia52)----->
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Steven David

    Senior Member
    General American English USA - Standard
    By the way, I took this sentence from the Commencement Speech by Steve Jobs at Stanford University.

    Here is the context:

    I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I nev er graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. <-----Excess quote removed by moderator (Florentia52)----->

    ... three stories from my life <

    These three stories are part of his life, which, again, is to say these stories belong to his life.

    "Three stories from my life" sounds, and is, more significant or profound than "three stories about my life".
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Note that “[the] story of my life!” is a cliché, often said when something bad/annoying happens to you, to mean “oh, typical – just my luck!”.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top