Happiness: Lessons from a New Science

Front Cover
Penguin Press, 2005 - Self-Help - 310 pages
5 Reviews
There is a paradox at the heart of our lives. We all want more money, but as societies become richer, they do not become happier. This is not speculation: It's the story told by countless pieces of scientific research. We now have sophisticated ways of measuring how happy people are, and all the evidence shows that on average people have grown no happier in the last fifty years, even as average incomes have more than doubled.

The central question the great economist Richard Layard asks in Happiness is this: If we really wanted to be happier, what would we do differently? First we'd have to see clearly what conditions generate happiness and then bend all our efforts toward producing them. That is what this book is about-the causes of happiness and the means we have to effect it.

Until recently there was too little evidence to give a good answer to this essential question, but, Layard shows us, thanks to the integrated insights of psychology, sociology, applied economics, and other fields, we can now reach some firm conclusions, conclusions that will surprise you. Happiness is an illuminating road map, grounded in hard research, to a better, happier life for us all.

From one of the leading voices in the new field of happiness studies comes a groundbreaking statement of the case: what happiness is, exactly, and how to get more of it, as individuals and as a society

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
0
4 stars
0
3 stars
4
2 stars
0
1 star
1

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - flydodofly - LibraryThing

In life, it is important to always refocus, reconsider the motivation, the options and especially the goals. The suggestion in "Happiness" is the obvious one - rethink the reasons behind the decisions ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - sillysampi - LibraryThing

This is an interesting way to study happiness through the lense of economics; especially socialism. It asks us to reconsider the meaning of "enough" in terms of wealth. Some people who are very much ... Read full review

Contents

Preface
ix
fP What is happiness?
11
y Are we getting happier?
29
E9 If youre so rich why arent you happy?
41
P So what does make us happy?
55
y Whats going wrong?
77
IjfjB Can we pursue a common good?
95
Is that the goal?
127
f fjH Can we afford to be secure?
167
p Can mind control mood?
187
fjfrl Do drugs help?
205
Conclusions for todays world
223
My thanks
237
List of annexes
245
References
273
Index
299

tlO How can we tame the rat race?
149
Copyright

Other editions - View all

About the author (2005)

Richard Layard is one of Britain's best-known economists and a leading world expert on unemployment and inequality. He runs Europe's leading economics research center within the London School of Economics. He worked for the British government as an economic adviser from 1997 to 2001, and in 2000 he became a member of the House of Lords. He is the author of a number of academic books.

Bibliographic information