Why We Should Stop Pursuing Happiness, and What We Should Do Instead

Sociologist Eva Illouz’s book about the ‘happiness industry’ assails positive psychology and the coaching culture, which place human happiness at the center

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Eva Illouz.
Eva Illouz.
Alon Idan
Alon Idan

Was it even a conversation about happiness? I’m not sure. We talked about the subject, but it’s unlikely that it was present when I met with Eva Illouz in the cafeteria of the Maiersdorf Faculty Club on the Mount Scopus campus of the Hebrew University. Maybe because happiness doesn’t really exist, maybe because it’s impossible to touch it with words, and maybe because it wasn’t a conversation between two happy people, at least not in the marketing-commercial-New Age sense of the word.

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