Smile or Die
Acclaimed journalist, author and political activist Barbara Ehrenreich explores the darker side of positive thinking. The author explores the tyranny of positive thinking, and offers a history of how it came to be the dominant mode in the USA.
In her droll and incisive analysis of the cult of cheerfulness, Ehrenreich ranges across contemporary religion, business and the economy, arguing, for example, that undue optimism and a fear of giving bad news sowed the seeds for the current banking crisis.
She argues passionately that the insistence on being cheerful actually leads to a lonely focus inwards, a blaming of oneself for any misfortunes, and thus to political apathy.
Rigorous, insightful and bracing as always, and also incredibly funny, “Smile or Die” uncovers the dark side of the ‘have a nice day’ nation.