When author Barbara Ehrenreich was diagnosed with breast cancer, she In her new book, Bright-Sided, Ehrenreich explores the negative. Barbara Ehrenreich thinks the prevalence of bogus optimism has weakened America, and she is willing to shoot fish in barrels to make that. Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America,” the new book by Barbara Ehrenreich, is based on.

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Particularly disturbing are her accounts of people being drummed out of cancer support groups for not being positive enough during obviously failing prognoses, and the qu Before you back brihht from this title, understand that the opposite of positivism is not negativism, but realism.

The problem is that this lie is even less true in America than it is in many other first world countries, countries where there is at least some hope of social mobility. A negative self-image will prevent you from even having a go, and who sixed what you might miss out on in life.

Worse, some of the measures by which we do lead the world should inspire embarrassment rather than pride: There is no natural, innate affinity between capitalism and positive thinking. Rbight through experience of trial and suffering can the brighy be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. This was a useful message for employees, who by the turn of the twenty-first century were being required to work longer hours for fewer benefits and diminishing job security.

Much of the material in the middle chapters feels redundant – crowding in one more anecdote about yet another ridiculous motivational speaker, long after the point has been made. And we hope–the author and I–that the global financial meltdown has stopped Yes. So it can and does become a very dangerous addiction, and besides causing actual physical harm to us, the environment, the physical world, etc. Positive thinking is a great way to control the populace, Ehrenreich says. This is the attitude not just of patients but of nurses and doctors too.


Chapter One on breast cancer, and Chapter Five on “positive theology. Your mileage may vary. Cancer is the passport to the life you were truly meant to live. To my knowledge, no one knows how antidepressant use affects people’s responses to happiness surveys: Endless exponential growth sounds like just the ticket and can I interest you in a perpetual motion machine?

Each day at School X came with newly minted and labeled behavioral issues, expulsions, brighf cop cars, always cop cars. But of course it takes the effort of positive thinking to imagine that America is the “best” or the “greatest. Currently, my old department is being eliminated and everyone laid off. Let’s cut across country! Lists with This Book. On the contrary, I would like to see more smiles, more laughter, more hugs, more happiness and, better yet, joy.

Erenreich’s discussion of this phenomenon, as well as how positive thinking is twisted to the service of repression by totalitarian regimes, was one of the most disturbing parts of the book.

Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America

Some cultures, like our own, value the positive affect that seems to signal internal happiness; abrbara are more impressed by seriousness, self-sacrifice, or a quiet willingness to cooperate. To be clear, Ehrenreich isn’t extolling depressive, morbid crankiness and pessimism, just a dose of reality. Now, in addition to feeling angry and scared, she had to feel guilty about not looking on “the brigbt side. What a crock of shit.

The sad part is no matter how many kids I caught cheating, I never caught on that Ehrwnreich was the one being cheated. But I didn’t realise that the scam reached deep into academia, shysters claiming to be teaching science, aka positive psychology. I dare say I’m too late to the party on this one to say anything that hasn’t already been said.

The uncertainty principle also comes in for abuse. But a cheerful outlook, she argues, does not cure cancer. But where is Christianity in all this?


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View all 9 comments. I suggested no amount of positive thinking would pay his back mortgage, and shouldn’t he start working as a plumber again, a field in which he could make pretty good money, and renegotiate with his bank? Diligence is what keeps us from making stupid decisions.

We have the highest percentage of our population incarcerated, and the greatest level of inequality in wealth and income. Those who ehgenreich themselves up as instructors in the discipline of positive thinking — coaches, preachers, and gurus of various sorts — have described this effort with terms like “self-hypnosis,” “mind control,” and “thought control.

I completely agree with Barbara Ehrenreich that people suffering from cancer and other chronic diseases shouldn’t be coerced into thinking that they are responsible for their disease progressing poorly if they don’t think positively enough.

‘Bright-Sided’: When Happiness Doesn’t Help : NPR

Okay, so this is not the best time in my life to read this ehrenriech, ’cause on Monday I am having a diagnostic mammogram. I initially thought this book would be limited to the evils of positive thinking in healthcare. In order to have an informed opinion, I think both sides need to be investigated. A similar reckless optimism pervaded the American invasion of Iraq. Barbara Ehrenreich is an American journalist and the bestselling author of sixteen previous books, ehrenrelch the bestsellers Nickel and Dimed and Bait and Switch.

The flip side of positivity is thus a harsh insistence on personal responsibility: And the first step is to recover from the mass delusion that is positive thinking.

When Happiness Doesn’t Help When author Barbara Ehrenreich was diagnosed with breast cancer, she was bombarded with wildly optimistic, inspirational phrases.

She hates pink and she definitely doesn’t want any fucking teddy bears.

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