Tuesday 10th November 2015, 8:00pm
Session 151: “Smile or Die: How Positive Thinking Fooled America and the World” by Barbara Ehrenreich
During this Theory Tuesdays session, Stefan Wagner presented excerpts from the book “Smile or Die: How Positive Thinking Fooled America and the World” by Barbara Ehrenreich (Granta Books, 2010).
“This brilliant new book from the author of Nickel and Dimed and Bait and Switch explores the tyranny of positive thinking, and offers a history of how it came to be the dominant mode in the USA. Ehrenreich conceived of the book when she became ill with breast cancer, and found herself surrounded by pink ribbons and platitudes. She argues passionately that the insistence on being cheerful actually leads to a lonely focus inwards, a blaming of oneself for any misfortunes, and thus to political apathy. Rigorous, insightful and bracing as always, and also incredibly funny, Smile or Die uncovers the dark side of the ‘have a nice day’ nation.” -Book Cover