tv Book Discussion on The Happiness Industry CSPAN August 8, 2015 4:45pm-6:01pm EDT
novels. international terrorism. i haven't decided what kind of biography i'll read. i'll probably read someone in history and grab some of those and read that as well. >> book tv wants to know what you're reading this summer. tweet us or post it on our facebook page facebook.com/booktv. will davies takes a critical look and whether it's good for us. >> hello everyone. welcome to the power house arena, if this is your first
time here, i'd like to say that this is the arena portion of our evening, which is to say we have a great event for you tonight. we regularly have awesome events but we're very excited for this one, the book launch of the happeniness industry with william davies and simon critchley. if you do have a question, raise your hand and you can talk to the motorcycle -- microphone. if you haven't noticed, we have cameras. come over, ask questions and we'll get the ball rolling. i want to briefly substance introduce our
author. william davies, political quarterly and he's an associate editor at renewal and open dem academy -- democracy. a few words about our moderator simon critchley. he asked me not to read it but to make some white remark which i hopefully just did. please put your hands together for william and simon. [applause] >> thank you very much, and welcome. i hate people that do this when they begin. i'm very proud -- i'm very proud to be here, and this is a
fantastic book and you should buy it and read it and maill money -- it's clear it's incredible acutely written it's full of analysis of contemporary ideology. i guess the first question, we're just talking about now a couple of minutes ago where this book came about and its relationship to the financial crisis, maybe we can begin talking about that. >> yeah, my research has been focused on how economics influence policy and how economics become a governing
rationality. many people became interested in how the regime was going to end and a new regime was going to emerge, and many people at the time believe that clearly the entire rationality of political economy had reached its end point. i remember the time that what was going on in 2008 it have 2009 was capitalism. and so i was sort of watching very closely how is this transition going to play out. we now know that none of those forms of transition actually occurred. that crisis was not really a crisis at all. i was looking the arguments being made within the economic
profession and policy making profession to how such failure could occur both in ways that condemn the politics or regulation or institutions. i began to notice that psychology and neuroscience were essential. they began to make the argument that financial traders were suffering, that they were guilty of behavioral habits and so on, that the brain was guilty of misleading people about risks. thighs extraordinary arguments which in many way led the state and capitalism off the roof.
one of the things that are in the book is that psychology is how society avoids looking in the mirror. psychology has capacity to support some of the capitalism where credit -- critique and blame are in the mind brain behavior and so that's what led me to start looking into the history of economic psychology and the rest of the book takes up from the question how has economies come to look at the minds, the brain and behavior in the way that it has. >> it's blending, the merging of economic psychology into this animal behavioral economics obsession with neuroscience. lets talk about the happeniness
industry. in terms of which is something new, the book is largely mist orcal, maybe if you can tell us where it emerged from? >> there's something that happened in the last 20 years. i think the last 20 years there's been a huge up search among scientists, management theorists, we are acquiring objective knowledge about emotions in particular. this is unleashed which looks
responses in the brain. tries to monitor positive emotion in the face, it can do this through a computer web cam. it can be within a small or something like that. huge optimism among scientists. emotions are becoming represented as objective phenomena. we think about feelings. and there shall -- thereby
things integrated. there's a much longer history of this as well. in many ways, the concern is why did we even think that emotions are things that are forms of objective scientific knowledge in the first place. why would we want to subject our feelings to this type of scientific analysis? that's where the book begins. eighteenth century. the problem of politics, the risk of politics was a risk language involves the use of dangerous words like justice or the public interest or the common good, they were sort of
abstract terms. he didn't mean that in a sort of sense, he meant it in a scientific sense. what happiness could do is rescue from sound. i think in many ways when you look at what's going on today with data analysts the defense of consulting something like an apple watch how am i doing today, how much have i worked today, what is my mood today. sentiments can be done by
computer. it is holding up what i would basically argue a utopia really that are in a state in something just like blood pressure or the temperature of the weather outside. they are not different from any other type of objective phenomena and can be known in that way. >> the remark you make early on which is incredibly suggestive, and you say one of the foundation arguments in favor of the markets would be served as a vast century device, opinions of values liberal we area -- era
so for the benefit the wider audience, if we could talk about neuroliberallism and the relationship with the market and how this new form is emerging, identifying in the happiness industry. >> sure. one of the foundation is the use of knowledge in society from 1945. experts never know enough about society in order to take big policy decisions where is the market is a scientific device. the market is not simply where we go and have our needs met or various choices or interests and so on, it's actually a way of discovering things. it is a scientific device for
discovering what is on people peoples minds effectively. the market acts as, quote indicate a cycle. it's a way of opinion polling. it can happen in constant emerging evolving science or what people might want to feel, whatever it might be. and this requires mechanism to keep elements of the market if the price has risen. of course, people have also tried to use for prediction markets. but one suggestion, possibility in the book that once you can monitor people in realtime
through the use of twitter or through the apple watch or even through -- this is where potentially comes paranoid, suggestions of conducting realtime facial analysis in public places. they conducted realtime emotional and actually -- the technologies are flooding private lives in the form of wearable technology and social media. they're flooding or -- our places but potentially public
but look, what about in relation to that point. how is -- we think about practices what we've seen as various kind of people that work organses corporations in the last years of documented and we see ourselves. is this work, this could be researched. you wake up in the morning start reading e-mail and start working. so there's this -- there's inform alization of work, we don't longer know what the limits are. that raises the question, well, because in the future we were meant to have in the past.
>> karma by bit bringing works together and forcing them to work together, capitalism capitalism across the great nation would eventually overwhelm the paradox, the contradiction of capitalism. this was despite similarly individuals say they may be brought together that our port and health, all it the own private but social congregations can develop their own logic. social conversations, which is not what you think about with well-being or pleasure and so we talk can we talk about that, social congregations and how this is similarly or oppressive prison life structure of the
world, and the emotions were living through my paper transformation. >> so the context of that is the idea of the social has become a preoccupation for barriers various people and market research and business, and help politics. you have the social prescribing where someone goes to their dr. with various forms of psychosomatic symptoms combination of mental health problems worthlessness and several things, rather than prescribe a behavioral intervention or pharmaceutical intervention, doctors doctors can now prescribe social activity. so this might be something like joining a choir, or gardening or dancing, that sort of thing. what i think is intriguing about
that i'm not an out and out proponent of that, but i think the big question on mental health is have you been d medicalize that type of problem. because medicalize in a problem is a way of keeping them within particular kinds of experts particular types of technical interventions, whether it be pharmaceutical or not. in a way what intrigues me about this new interest in the social media, and that that is a key part of this now allows social relationship to become visible and viable and manipulable in a way by various companies. but at the same time as we become more and more, how how we connect with each other which is
a concern about some of these expert techniques of social analyst dixon that sort of thing. the question is when you see a direct course do you can something emerge from that which is not reducible to the logic which it brings into the first place. i suppose it would require uni first of all different vision of a human being. you need a vision of a human being who behaves, who is amenable to various interventions and stimulus and response the way psychology visit here views it. in the book i link at people to someone who is vocal, someone
who has the authority to explain and arrange their own's experiences and circumstances, is therefore in relationship with dialogue with other people. that dialogue with other people isn't just a form of behavior, it's not what psychologists call report from that type estate what people say isn't to be judged in terms of it being factually force. it's it's actually the basis for relationship and that might be enough, on a small scale, and i would argue it's the basis of democratic relationships as well were ultimately human beings are beings who speak to each other, and they do so in ways that can't be rendered entirely, and how happens is an open question. >> the villain of the book is
benson and raymond williams idea of democratic dialogue if what's happened with "the happiness industry" is to critique what didn't work we've gone into what someone called the synergy of inwardness. as a way of escaping from the tyranny of sounds, your suggestion would be a turnout towards dialogue towards language then. which is interesting, so you are hopeful the last word of the book is hope, and i just wondered okay let's talk about hope. the last lines, and also in
relation to that i want to bring this up it's really interesting it's the valorization of smartness, the book ends with this we and in this universe, happiness industry is is about the industry of smartness, smart tvs, smart phones, everything has to be smart. what is smart about the smart. and at the end he raises question, should we celebrate dumbness? maybe, maybe, what's wrong with that? but then the last word of the book is hope where with the hope lie? with benson the problem was the tierney of sound, he saw languages in ways that didn't
perfectly capture empirical realities. in a way that has to be turned into something which we resent and want to eliminate wit into something which we affirm and celebrate, but also recognize the basis for tragedy and comedy, it's something which psychoanalysis i think is an agreement, it equally hostile to the benson view cousin cycle analysis language is flawed, messy, doesn't quite say what it means to say yet it's all that we have really. we can't get around speech. of course there nonverbal forms of communication but nevertheless it's cultural in certain respects. i think what's needed, and i think this is the creek critique
of smartness smartness is a kind of efficiency of representation in some way. it's also the idea that someone knows how hot i want my coffee or whatever it might be. there's a kind of fact about me, about what i want, about where i want to go that day, and how i want to get there, are get there, are out there, they just need to be collected and have my life sorted out in a perfectly efficient fashion. i suppose there's almost a sort of gloom fantasy and some sort of way to be living in an environment that is perfectly adaptable to whatever you want before you even know that you want it. so there is no failure no
ambiguity, no path to tragedy it doesn't accept that human beings speak in ways that are ambiguous and are able to be misunderstood but can also communicate far more than a number. so the word hope only hope to the hope is given and i think there bits of back here that has residents of this as well i suppose excepting that we get things wrong is the only basis for hope in a society that wants this kind of perfect empirical representation of everything. so shouldn't. >> so shouldn't we just give up this idea of happiness? you kind kind of had your bets around that in the book because it one way of looking at it is one way
of looking at his happiness is the ideal of human floor shame you find it in aristotle it's really rather specific, it's an idea of blessedness, which for him came with the life of contemplation which was reserved for a few people. there are lots of us who can experience genuine happiness what we have seen in the history of happiness is that rather elitist, the idea of happiness has become what other it has become a quantifiable metric and that's kind of what you're analyzing in the book. but then wouldn't the response be, well then we just give up the pursuit of happiness and just embrace normal human
misery? >> and brace normal human misery? well maybe aspire to normal human misery, normal humans are some we could urine after. we been bewitched by this idea of happiness, or well-being fulfillment or in the big american version of this is authenticity. leading an authentic life, and having authentic life in your private life and your work life and everything has to be authentic. it's just interesting that it has to be the greatest american novel, moby dick, i think is arguing that authenticity is kind of a white whale that's going to kill you. maybe happiness, maybe you could say the same thing about happiness. what it one suggestion or one conclusion of the book be that you just give up that your idea
of happiness is delusional. >> i wouldn't give up on happiness, i would certainly abandon happiness is something that could be produced in this type of machinelike way. i think maybe rather than happiness, the reduction of suffering is something that is plausible, something which involves quite mundane political acts and political reforms, there are things that can be done tomorrow which would reduce a lot of suffering. you can reduce the amount people were, you can distribute work in different ways in society, in some ways when you describe the book there aspects of happiness in economics and statistics that i actually see in a different way in the book. it comes through that high
levels of inequality in the workplace and unemployment, and insecurity and insecurity is terrible the people's happiness. so when you hear something like a prime minister caring about well-being you know there are clear things you can do in the economy tomorrow to reduce suffering, if you want to call that to promote happiness than so be it. people who people who are trying to raise children while living very vicarious economic lives have no capacity for happiness, the stress of doing that sort of thing is terrible. and there's been psychological studies done and all sort of reforms of the british government, that talk about welfare form that are loading more, and more stress on people who are already vulnerable it's
actually punishing them for their vulnerability. i think there are things that would work within contemporary capitalism that cause suffering, could be changed, and then have a rather a rather more simple, left-wing view of this. i think those types of interventions and reforms are thwarted by this constant throwing back on the in bejewel, saying if you're unhappy, you have to behave differently or act differently or choose differently. in some ways it's rather traditional argument for a different political economy. >> will that's good. >> do you think it's different in the united states? we've talked about the british contacts, here we have happiness as a political factor the pursuit of happiness, do you think the question of happiness is different in articulation of
the american contacts? it's deeper or more pervasive? >> anecdotally i think that's that's the case, america has a much larger self-help culture, or psychology culture. i think the cultural impact of antidepressant in america in the past years is far more pronounced than it has been in britain. when i say cultural i mean in a sense of the view that each human being can flourish to a greater extent through some form of expert intervention, which is some type of broader intervention of anti- depressants. i think clearly there's something different in the united states, i think in a way it brings us back to the liberalism in a way what the american worldview and the new liberal world view share is a
question of society in america they settled in the late 18th century and the liberals they do settled by ronald reagan and therefore there's opportunity for political transformation cultural transformation cannot happen at the level of laws are in society and therefore must happen at the level of cognition, behavior, and so on. so hope and sense of progress and sense of the future being different from the past, can only arrive through terms of inferiority. that's where america is different than britain and summaries back. >> 's i think britain is in a political deadlock right now or i don't think anybody believes the future will be different than the past. i think part of the story, you must, how would you answer that
question with this person living in the united states. >> i think there's a sense in which, this is anecdotal but after the financial crisis there is a joke that i was in dublin and with people lost jobs in dublin, or or in london they tend to blame the government. here they tend to blame themselves. so a sense of shame so that one is bound up with these deep structural shifts of which one but the feeling of that, the effect of that was an a defective ones of one's inferiority. it was a a failure, it was a personal failure if you're out of work or whatever. so there's a sense in which the happiness here and the feelings of inferiority is deeper, is that that may have been translated over into other cultures. we should open this up we need
a microphone that's going to go or route so you need to wait till the microphone arrives but does anybody want to ask a question. >> will think of some or barela or anything really? >> i feel like the basic philosophy paper that every college freshman rights is about happiness when you're comparing and contrasting either aristotle and con's or do you see those divisions pay out to play out in our response of happiness industry? >> i argue, on this isn't particularly surprising thing to argue that benson is the key here. there is an interesting german influence running through as well i talk about the origins
of the scientific psychology in the 1850s he was the first philosopher to engage in mathematical questions between the relationship between the world and the mine. so questions about how can i know the effective world, what is the relationship between my feelings in the world, beckner tried to answer these questions by doing these bizarre things where he lifted weights and try to discover how long it took for the weight to create pain. if i double the size of the way, what would would it do to my sense of the feeling. in a way a kind of new age of questions i do think there are multiple traditions here, none are kantian really, when when that philosophy is kinda anti-
utilitarian and if something causes you misery if you should do it. what i dislike about some of the proponents of happiness policies and interventions a lot of him say it's about forcing it's about the good life it's about virtue, and that's why you need to take another thousand steps every day. so you kinda shift from a rich ethical concepts of human fulfillment, and human ideology to a behavioral analysis of measurements control, and iphone app. >> i don't know if you have anything to add to that with how difficult philosophical positions are to play here. >> i'll just talk about this
kantian she used to wear t-shirt at the summer picnics and said kantian's out do and the idea of morality being something that one does as a relations ship is usually some relationship to guilt. cancer is what does the mall off feels like the modern law feel like pain, so this going to be the opposite of that. in many ways and thus the way i suppose i go not in a kantian direction but i don't want pain just experience pain all the time but it's the way in which the seamlessness of our capture
within this regime of images within this world which is a world reflecting back to us in some way that feels inferior and it feels intimate but is actually objective quantifiably. that's it type a very peculiar state when you feel when you're on your phone or your laptop, or whatever that this is intimate that you're having an intimate relationship with someone, but you're not and we know that. that's the moment were in, it seems were stuck it within this imaginary regime of images which puts us in a rather peculiar place. >> who wants to say something else? >> could you call upon the
issues you raise about the issues of the robotics and private industry in the dimensioning ability for people to find satisfying work that also lets them support themselves at a good level without demeaning themselves to a 60 or 80 hour work week and what not? >> it's not something i talk about in the book. i'm not sure i'm all that qualified to speak about it. there is a fear, as you indicate that maybe work and the amount of work available is going to shrink and maybe the rise of that uber economy is going to lead people to be chasing evermore perilous types of work.
i think that will clearly increase the amount of stress in society if that happens. it will therefore become necessary, according to the proponents of happiness that people engage in more forms of mine pull this in meditation and so on. if you keep them within that type of economic system. there are more idealistic views for the economy and those that argue that being in this type of society you need to have a basic income, their types of policy suggestions of how you can make such a society livable. it's not something i really address in the book and i'm not quite sure what i think about all that. >> who's next? >> just wait for the mic to
come. >> talk to a lot about this construct of happiness and i wonder if at all in your book you talk about how happiness is defined? and what what the meaning of that is, i think you've used the word flourishing a few times and i can't help but wonder my secondary question of that is are we perhaps creating a culture where people's expectations are too high? people are able to be comfortable being uncomfortable because they have the sense that they think should be perfect all the time. >> that's a good question. twenty years after the second world war were happiness becomes its there's a few different stopping points out the books, through the early 60s there's a key moment were happiness gets defined in a particular way. it get defined in a way that's partly medical, through the
world or health organization in 1948 they do fine health as complete physical, mental, physical well-being. it in fact that means were all unhealthy really. who has complete physical, social, and mental well-being? so we are all ill. not long after that the late 1950s the antidepressants were discovered. when they were discovered they didn't know what to call because the effects of them were so huge, they first called them psychic energizers because there's no symptoms they seem to olivier, it just seems to make people feel more up for, more themselves. in a way that ties in with its postwar mood of trying to come up with a science of human positivity, human capability and flourishing and so on.
the very first efforts to measure happiness came in the 1960s with surveys, i think all of that amounts to a form of a view of happiness and a third of something which each of us should have. it's also something that's amenable to experts, expert expert measurements but also crucially, it's decontextualized. it's not, i'm happy because i'm with someone or i'm happy because something happen, or i'm happy because i love my job or i'm happy just because i feel happy today. it's a view of happiness is something that needs to be worked on, maintained, and something which is a little like
health. that's in a way what brings us to the concept of well-being. well-being, is in some ways the term that captures that type of postwar construct. happiness tends to float around between the definition so there are some that politics psychologist that says you can run a survey on you and find out if you're happy and cycle therapist webs different view altogether. that well-being concept concept is emerging in the coast postwar. it is quite medicalize and quite quantifiable way but crucially decontextualized. >> it also is together with the rise of spirituality decline of sudden, i'll go back to reef again he says that tribes are therapeutic. he says we've given
up a strong idea idea of god and place it with awake idea of spirituality. it's that weak pervasive idea of spirituality that lead to the soft and mushy that is well-being. >> could you talk about dubai and singapore. they are the happiest place on earth. >> dubai has kinda jumped the kool-aid unhappiness, and has pledged itself to become the happiest city in the world. they have this whole government agenda which includes trying to collect constant feedback on how people are feeling as they are going about their day and using services. it's even been rumored that in new york the visual scanning company is that they are using
that type of technology on tv not work to collect real-time data on peoples emotions. you can see things on the internet like a smiley face, neutral face in a non-happy face and as you're going about him doing your stuff you can hit one of these buttons. we come across some of this stuff and in a way that old. when my book is published i got run up by someone from the dubai government team and said you have a book out about happiness and i was wondering if you could help us. and i thought why don't think you've read my book about happiness, i am not sure i'm going to help you become the happiest city in the world. i sorta keep play my cards close to my chest, but he said i'm
currently in the u.k. and i need to make this phone call now, because i don't want to do this back in dubai. just you know his excellency, i can't remember the title of dubai, wants to buy to be the happiest city and in the world, he keeps them in a constant contest against singapore to be not only the most contentious state in the world but also the happiest. he doesn't want any negative feedback on any of this. he said in a battle initially to get the on :-) onto the tv if it hadn't been for a little dose of reality they were either going to give you the choice of neutral or happy. he confessed to me and confidence, here i am talking about in new york a week later, on c-span television so i hope his job is safe.
no there is no chance that dubai happiness data collection was going to generate anything other than an incredibly positive outcome for the statistics otherwise singapore will might end up being the happiest country. >> one thing is for sure, new york will never be the happiest city in the world but we know that about his power. people are miserable complaining. any complainers? i was just wondering if you dare to compare this notion of doing it out of duty with the ethics of doing it with or desire. >> it's similar.
>> but how because of it's a desire you have to acknowledge you don't know where this stuff is coming out from but that's the only sense of the film it you've gotten, is going along with this thing that you don't fully digest or understand words coming from. >> within the book in many ways the strange situation we find ourselves in in relationship and psychotherapy or forms of state administered therapy, or behavioral therapy in psychoanalysis psychoanalysis is connected to the normal human misery and that means traversing your truth of who you are which has a relationship to your desire and this is what they said not giving away on one's desire, or though it desire which is in you. that what desires and use not going to make you happy it's going to produce the symptoms
these disorders that we experience. the way i see psychoanalysis is in its strongest tradition has a commitment to an idea of truth which is an idea of happiness because we just might be the kind of creatures who are not made for happiness. that might be the best thing about us that what makes us peculiar is our peculiar ability not to : side with ourselves, not to be satisfied there is a thing within us that is constantly irritates, rubs against us and at the same time that is what possible turning out word, we articulate in language and social life.
i guess what wills arguing in the book it's a very kind of classical analysis and social right, it's it's language, it's being with others. in relation to that with social media being antisocial. there's a question in the back as well. >> again, putting it directly i think in some ways the hope and there's areas and social media and their ways in which social medias can produce something other than dust itself but in many ways it's an expansion of economic and managerial analysis into everyday life. lenin said that in a socialist
society the host society would be like one large corporation. he was inspired to buy of corporations are efficient, and in a way there is similar to that in addition to facebook is take the technique that works so well in science and these huge corporations and throw them outwards on society. so behavioral management, rather than keep that in teamwork and inside the corporation let's plug public with it. in a way there's an idea of corporations are be described as a gas they just sort of seep out, brands sort of get everywhere they end up on tattoos and all sorts of things. in a way i think social media is
part of that as well. >> there's a question in the back. >> how long have we got? how long do we have? >> all the time in the world. >> when were talking about happiness of course, i wonder if dubai considers that disneyland has the corner on this moniker of we are the happiest place on earth? that's that's what i grew up knowing right? i wonder if they have challenge that in any way in the media. also wonder if you would talk about, little more on how spirituality figures and to your concept of happiness and, now now giving you three different things to talk about, sorry but that's how my happy brain works.
how, our ability to be happy is also reflected in our ability to be sad or things that we might consider to be the opposite of happiness. >> absolutely. >> that might've been too much of a combination. >> okay disneyland spirituality and happiness, sadness. >> my concern in the book is all pick up the second one. i'm not sure about disneyland. >> i wasn't quite sure what the question was, i didn't quite, the disneyland question is? was dubai thinking about disneyland? >> so i know how do you know whether the what the happiest
place on earth, denmark us was to be the happiest place on earth. but it's but it's a different way of answering survey questions. on the book talks about measurements and behavioral interventions, attempts to render emotions, and looking at facts affecting policy and business see business industry. i really, really didn't deal with the spirituality question. one thing seems to me is this behaviorist view of a human being is looking at a social scientist, the doctor, the biologists, there's nothing left over about human beings once you have subjected them to all of this analysis. in a way, that is clearly for the philosophical clearly there is something more about human beings and even the most
scientific behaviorist neuroscientist must rest denies that there is something left over about the human condition that mri state dance don't quite capture. that's why this happiness industry and the rise of spiritualism in a way, causes the remainder. the remainder kind gets closed by borrowing bits of the b mac be the change you want to be. >> at sort of embracing of decision even decision which is now predictable there's a kind of there's a bit of the human left over and you have to engage in forms of meditation and mindfulness and so on. society has ultimately void of romance or on big ute i think
that's a view of society is, it doesn't ultimately work, it breaks down on some level. i think that's where socialism comes inches. >> yes i agree, it's agree, it's about getting back to work, it's about doing yoga and all this get back to work more efficiently. it's highly regulated lysed spirituality serves the mind. >> if i can follow up with the spirituality bit. in america particularly with the christian view you in america you have people preaching prosperity he wants you to be happy he will take away your suffering, the other way you can look at is the great christian insight is that god himself was suffering and died and the resurrected christ the wounds remained. so when you talk about celebrating dumbness do you think there's parallel there
with coming to terms with original sin? >> oh i'm all about original sin so yeah. i think dumbness is you could translate that into christian terms about the cross in christ was was really stupid. he certainly wasn't happy. he was nailed to a tree, and the way in which christianity has one version of this. christian and eddie has been reduced to this gospel, acting out of medical spiritual crap, but it's something much more austere and demanding which is love. love is a kind of pain, love certainly doesn't make you happy. >> where the we have this idea of love and happiness go together, peace, love and happiness. it. >> and that's kinda crazy.
>> i have two quick comments that you respond to or not. the first with a mention of antidepressants. something i noticed with people around me is being pursed griped mood stabilizers rather than moods antidepressants. actually they could cause as prescription. it's really emphasizing that well-being is flatlined. cousins maybe i'm too happy or dangerously happy, to me it kinda clarifies also in relationship to certain contemporary unhappiness or discontentment, or laura berlin someone mentioned over here expectations, what happens when those expectations provides for
us and makes us richer than our parents. what happens with apples away? we actually need a mood stabilizer rather than an antidepressant. the second, was i wanted to mention the documentaries of adam curtis, i don't know if you've had a relationship and also many others root weighted to the theme of robotics. and so i reckon men these if you're not familiar with them because they offer a really interesting line, i'm not sure if you've engaged with him at all. >> i know his work well. >> there's this propaganda right that this what is bernie's, his nephew comes to new york and there's propaganda new york and that's probably not a good word for what you're trying to do. let's try something else will call public relations. that was the beginning a public relations. >> we have time for one more question.
>> high, so going back to what to what you said about tech not biology and spirituality and all that. so i worked and have worked in technology for 16 years and when all the technology came out we saw the results come in and around 2012 and 2013 we started to see the reports that say or show how people feelings were now changing. their simple ability to touch generated an emotion entirely and then. i began to think about this, and i thought will hold on i think it's very simple which is, we as human beings externalize everything humanly possible if we can. the moment we started to touch
the divide no longer existed were now confronted with the fact that there is a whole which leads me back to spirituality. we are all connected to everything, it is just us that externalize things especially when a comes to technology now that we can reach and then go into three-dimensional world, or four a three-dimensional world, or four dimensional and take that tall new levels. now are confronted with a brand-new reality of how we see ourselves, which is hard when we do have the ability do that. so with all this data my question to you i thought it might be helpful, his happiness being the ways being generated are not being generator is a weapon, what you think it would be? >> if it if it was a weapon, happiness is used as a weapon. they teach happiness to soldiers to say that they can be more resilient in warfare my things i mentioned in the book was paul and he studied the neural underpinnings of the relationships of trust.
one of his clients is the pentagon because if you invaded the country and you want your boots on the ground to not be shot at or blown up you need to teach your soldiers how to behave in certain ways which is likely to lead to relationships of trust. there's a long history of the u.s. military using the behavioral sciences to achieve certain goals and so on. i'm assuming you don't mean a weapon in the physical sense. what is its goal? it depends. i think it's different types of genders that when you look at neurosciences and you have narrowly economics you have social neurosciences, the facts about human being are different depending on what your agenda is.
you're going to have a different vision of happiness if you are a manager than if you are a marketer, but if your dr., or soldier. i don't think there's a single instrumentality going on here. the mere fact that there are so many different ways of weapon icing happiness if you want to use that term, to suggest a fundamental floor in my vision is we might get to the single roots of what human beings are all about some way. i think ultimately, if you look at the sociology of this is demonstrate it's completely contingent on the institutional, political interest as one sees it. >> thank you for coming in thinking about happiness with us. will will be signing books over there, so so join me and thinking him. >> inc. you very much.
[applause]. >> thank you again for coming out we do have copies of "the happiness industry" for sale at the register and will, will be signing them. >> thank you for coming. >> book tv is on twitter and facebook, and we want to hear from you. tweet us twitter.com/book tv or post a comment on her facebook page, facebook.com/book tv. >> and now on your screen publisher ww norton mr. mcfeely what are some of the big bucks that norton has coming out this fall? >> were excited about everything we are publishing this fall, you only have time for a few one. the biggest one is been vernaculars memoir of his work
at the feds to the great recession it's called the courage to act. it will be a major book, october. >> have you read it already? >> i have read it it is in bargo i am the editor on that particular book. i did need to read it, ben is a wonderful writer, it's a dramatic account of how they use every tool in the book, they created some new tools, it's a wonderful story, about heroism, about heroism under fire. an enormous financial crisis. >> i've also like to tell you about in tolls, he's talking about world war ii, this volume 1942 to 1944 when all of the armed services particularly the navy were fighting their way through the islands of the south pacific en route to tokyo. >> i was just going to ask you
if it was like european theater. >> you had exactly the right idea, it's a wonderful writer a riveting account of the battle across the pacific. >> okay. >> okay we have time for one more. >> one more is 10g, kenji lopez he has become a huge figure on social media, writing about cooking he enjoys not only the recipes but helping us understand how it is that cooking works. if you want to guy who has boiled a couple of hundred eggs so he could know the very best way to do it kenji is your man. if you want you want know how to grill a steak just the right way, kenji is your guy. this is going to be a major book release coming in the fall also. >> how long have you been in the publishing industry and how did you get and it. >> it. >> i've been around forever, 38 years at this point i came to the rank editing collagen textbook for 21 years ago i was
asked to run deb uw norton company and it's been a great run. >> norton still independent? >> yes and probably so were doing textbook still and very successfully. >> thank you for your time. >> while she was his assistant to 1990 until his death in 1994, she discussed the book on book notes in 1996. is there a particular moment in your career. [inaudible]