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Goldsmiths - University of London

The Happiness Industry: How the government and big business sold us wellbeing

Davies, Will. 2015. The Happiness Industry: How the government and big business sold us wellbeing. London: Verso. ISBN 978-1-78168-845-8 [Book]

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Abstract or Description

What was a Buddhist monk doing at the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos lecturing the world’s leaders on mindfulness? Why do many successful corporations have a ‘chief happiness officer’? What can the chemical composition of your brain tell a potential employer about you? In the past decade, governments and corporations have become increasingly interested in measuring the way people feel: ‘the Happiness index’, ‘Gross National Happiness’, ‘well-being’ and positive psychology have come to dominate the way we live our lives. As a result, our emotions have become a new resource to be bought and sold.

In a fascinating investigation combining history, science and ideas, William Davies shows how well-being influences all aspects of our lives: business, finance, marketing and smart technology. This book will make you rethink everything from the way you work, the power of the ‘Nudge’, the ever-expanding definitions of depression, and the commercialization of your most private feelings. The Happiness Industry is a shocking and brilliantly argued warning about the new religion of the age: our emotions.

Item Type: Book

Keywords:

happiness, neoliberalism, psychology

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Politics

Date:

May 2015

Item ID:

17186

Date Deposited:

17 Mar 2016 15:24

Last Modified:

30 Jun 2017 10:16

URI: http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/17186
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