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Download Bright-sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Bright-sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America (Unabridged), by Barbara Ehrenreich
3.83 out of 53.83 out of 53.83 out of 53.83 out of 53.83 out of 5 3.83 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Barbara Ehrenreich Narrator: Kate Reading Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A sharp-witted knockdown of America's love affair with positive thinking and an urgent call for a new commitment to realism.

Americans are a positive people - cheerful, optimistic, and upbeat: this is our reputation as well as our self-image. But more than a temperament, being positive, we are told, is the key to success and prosperity.

In this utterly original take on the American frame of mind, Barbara Ehrenreich traces the strange career of our sunny outlook from its origins as a marginal 19th-century healing technique to its enshrinement as a dominant, almost mandatory, cultural attitude. Evangelical mega-churches preach the good news that you only have to want something to get it, because God wants to prosper you. The medical profession prescribes positive thinking for its presumed health benefits. Academia has made room for new departments of positive psychology and the science of happiness. Nowhere, though, has bright-siding taken firmer root than within the business community, where, as Ehrenreich shows, the refusal even to consider negative outcomes - like mortgage defaults - contributed directly to the current economic crisis.

With the mythbusting powers for which she is acclaimed, Ehrenreich exposes the downside of America's penchant for positive thinking: On a personal level, it leads to self-blame and a morbid preoccupation with stamping out negative thoughts. On a national level, it's brought us an era of irrational optimism resulting in disaster. This is Ehrenreich at her provocative best - poking holes in conventional wisdom and faux science, and ending with a call for existential clarity and courage. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Geri | 6/25/2011

    " A quick and eye-opening read. The chapter about how positive thinking (ie, delusions of grandeur and an inability to do math) caused the financial meltdown is especially worth reading. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Edmund | 6/22/2011

    " Book is an interesting topic but very slow.

    I think if anything too many facts, not enough narrative which is often a problem in non-fiction.

    Glad to see a skeptic on positive psychology.

    Edmund "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Ann | 6/15/2011

    " This is a great interrogation of positive psychology and the lack of reason in contemporary American culture. It's time to start complaining and start acting, changing policy and getting politically active, says Ehrenreich. I couldn't agree more. All these personal affirmation need action!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Burnt | 5/6/2011

    " Thank goodness someone wants to put the boots to all this positive thinking bullshit - a scourge that destroyed at least one place I worked. "

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