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Happiness: Lessons from a New Science (Second Edition) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 24. Juni 2010


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Produktinformation

  • Taschenbuch: 320 Seiten
  • Verlag: Penguin; Auflage: 2nd Revised edition (24. Juni 2010)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0141016906
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141016900
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 12,9 x 1,8 x 19,8 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (4 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 261.645 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
  • Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen

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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

Unorthodox, devastatingly straightforward and more provocative of actual thought than 90% of books said to be "thought-provoking". If happiness isn't a political issue, what's the point of politics? (Andrew Marr)

A remarkable book ... which effectively trashes the claim of economics to guide policy for a good society ... read it, and take heart (Simon Caulkin Observer)

Fascinating ... argues that we should make happiness, not growth, the object of our economic policies (John Kay Financial Times) -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .

Synopsis

In this landmark book, Richard Layard shows that there is a paradox at the heart of our lives. Most people want more income. Yet as societies become richer, they do not become happier. This is not just anecdotally true, it is 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. In fact, the First World has more depression, more alcoholism and more crime than fifty years ago. This paradox is true of Britain, the United States, continental Europe, and Japan. What is going on?

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In diesem Buch (Mehr dazu)
Einleitungssatz
There is a paradox at the heart of our lives. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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Buchdeckel | Copyright | Inhaltsverzeichnis | Auszug | Stichwortverzeichnis | Rückseite
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8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von CP am 11. Oktober 2005
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Dieses Buch setzt sich für die Maximierung der Glücklichkeit als alles leitendes Prinzip ein. Der Autor kritisiert unter anderem die Fokussierung der Politik auf die Steigerung des BIP. Dabei argumentiert er empirisch fundiert und folgert schlüssig. Man merkt ihm seinen ökonomischen Background eindeutig an. Er schlägt die klassische auf das abstrakte Konzept der Nutzenmaximierung ausgerichtete Ökonomie mit ihren eigenen Waffen.
Ein Buch das mich zum intensiven Nachdenken und Umdenken bewegt hat!
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Dr. Martin Hennegriff am 2. August 2008
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I'm in awe of both the content of the book "Happiness - Lessons from a new science" and the style by which the British Economist Richard Layard put it down in writing. In a style anything but dry, with minimal usage of stats or math, he engages the reader in an entertaining, vivid manner. He explains in an illuminating manner the circumstances under which the apparent oxymoron, ie. more income equals more happiness does NOT apply. I'm giving a spoil-free review. Layard admits that the behaviors, ideas and factors listed need further experimental validation. Granted that this interdisciplinary branch of economical, neuroscientific, behaviorist, philosophic & psychological science is brand new, this is understandable, though. However, if you don't watch excessively TV, read a book instead & socialize with friends, chances are good that you're on your personal path toward leading a happy life.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von Khan am 2. November 2009
Format: Taschenbuch
The book gives a fantastic overview of empirical research on happiness. Even though there are many facts compiled in the first part, it's a good read and quite revelatory. The second part is mostly the author's opinion on what to do with the newly found knowledge about happiness. The deviation from the very fact-based approach makes this part look a bit esoteric and overly light, but there are a few good thoughts in there.

I highly recommend this book to learn about what makes people in general happy ' it makes you question some choices in your life, in a good way.
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Nein, das ist nicht wieder ein neuer Lebenshilfe-Ratgeber, der behauptet die LeserInnen glücklich machen zu können: das ist die kompakte Erklärung, wie man internationale Studien zur "Zufriedenheit" (denn so sollte man "Happiness" besser übersetzen) nutzen kann: nicht nur im Privatleben, sondern auch in der Politik.

Sehr empfehlenswert ist dazu auch ein Blick auf die Webseite der ACTION FOR HAPPINESS, denn diese britische Initiative hat der Autor gemeinsam mit anderen WissenschaftlerInnen aufgrund seiner Forschungen gegründet.
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Amazon.com: 37 Rezensionen
99 von 115 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Great beginning, disappointing conclusion 7. März 2005
Von David Eidelman - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Richard Layard's book has two parts: (1) The Problem (Why People aren't happier even though income is way up), plus lots of good studies on the subject, and (2) What can be done (To make us happier than we are).

The first part is loaded with great information coming from research studies--what time of day most of us are the happiest, which countries are happiest, the role genes play in happiness, what activities make us happy, how stable happiness has been in the U.S. over time, how jealousy of the income of our peers has on our happiness, and why Jeremy Bentham's concept of maximizing the most happiness for the most people should be the basis for personal and governmental decisions. So far, so good. I totally agree, and found the reading very worth while and educational.
Part two--how to solve the problem of stable instead of rising happiness--is where the book gets into big trouble. Not only does Layard not come up with any down to earth specific suggestions, but he often uses gobbledigook to explain murky solutions. Example: "A society cannot flourish without some sense of shared purpose. The current pursuit of self-realisation will not work...." What exactly this means in concrete ideas, he doesn't make clear--at least, to me. He has oversimplified obvious ideas with no great plans on how to implement them. Example: Unemployment causes unhappiness--so, we need to reduce unemploymnent. Duh!
In other words, Layard appears to be an economist who wants the government to reduce our stress. Since when has the government reduced our stress? That's what I want to know.
If you look at most advanced countries trailing the U.S. in happiness, they include France and Germany, two countries which give their people cradle to grave medical care and enough vacation time to put any U.S. citizen into extasy. Yet France and Germany trail the U.S.A. by several percentage points in happiness.
Layard leaves out possibly the most important factor in determining the happiness of the people in a given country--economic freedom. [...] Those with the least economic freedom trail behind.
If the reader wants tips on how to improve his or her personal happiness, I suggest reading Authentic Happiness by Seligman. Having said all this, there is so much great information on the subject of happiness in this book I found it well worth reading and I'm glad I bought it. Just don't expect any great ideas on how to solve the problem.
I still do agree with Layard that legislation and government policy should be concerned with the happiness of the people effected by it. And, each government should do its best to measure the happiness of its citizens. Whether a given policy will increase or decrease happiness--now that's not so easy to predict.
One gets the feeling that Layard is using his research on happiness to bolster his views on economics. Whether they do is highly debatable.
21 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Happiness as an Economic Issue 15. März 2007
Von Dr. Richard G. Petty - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
It can sometimes be incredibly helpful for an "outsider" to have a look at a problem. So it proves in this excellent book by Lord Richard Layard, a former Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics, and now an active member of the British House of Lords.

What can an economist tell us about the science and the art of happiness? The answer is a great deal. In 2004 Layard wrote a report - that is available online - in which he pointed out that despite the advances in the economy and in the provision of healthcare, we are no happier than we were fifty years ago. He went on to say that psychological problems and mental illness are amongst the biggest causes of misery. At a time when political action only seems to happen when we can attach a dollar cost and potential savings, he added that human suffering imposes severe burdens on the economy. At the same time we already have good evidence that the tools for dealing with all this psychological distress already exist. In his report he went on to propose that the United Kingdom needs 10,000 new cognitive behavioral therapists to make a major dent in all this suffering. What was different was that he went on to show that this expenditure made good economic sense.

The book is broken into two parts. The first is an excellent review of the factors involved in happiness, as well as a foray into the work of the English Utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham, who believed that personal and societal decisions should all be based on the idea of creating the greatest happiness for the greatest number of people. In the second part Layard discusses his report and his prescriptions for action. One weakness of the book is that it does not stand well on its own. His action plan is easier to understand if you have read the report. (I cannot include the website address in this review, but if you look for Layard's name and "Prime Minister's Strategy Unit," you will quickly find it online.)

This is not in any way a book about how to create more personal happiness. It is instead an interesting attempt to draw up the bare bones of a strategy for increasing the happiness quotient of a country. It rather begs the questions about whether the creation of happiness is a legitimate concern of government. Not long ago there were news reports of one Asian country in which moves were afoot to make happiness not just a right but also a duty!

Nobody wants to pathologize ordinary life, and few would claim that cognitive behavior therapy is the only way to help people in trouble. But the fact that a powerful economist and advisor to the British Government has seen not just the human cost of unhappiness, but also added the dollars and cents that may lead to action is remarkable.
21 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Book provides useful review 5. März 2005
Von Timothy J. Bartik - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Richard Layard provides an excellent review of recent research on what determines human happiness. He interprets this in light of his own committment to a utilitarian philosophy, but most of the research findings he reviews, and the policy conclusions he reaches, should be relevant to readers of a variety of philosophical and religious persuasions. For example, page 64 of the book has a facinating table, attributed to research by John Helliwell, which reports that being divorced, rather than married, has about two-and-a-half times the depressing effect on happiness of losing one-third of your family income. Being unemployed, rather than employed, has about three times the depressing effect of a one-third loss in family income. Even if you are employed, if the general unemployment rate goes up by 10 points, this reduces happiness more than a one-third drop in family income. All of these effects consider a change in one factor, holding all other factors constant. These findings are surprising and important to take into account. They are important to take into account even if you reject the claim of utilitarianism that human happiness should be the be-all and end-all of philosophy and social policy.

I should note that Layard is a very well-regarded British economist who has done important work on unemployment issues and benefit-cost analysis of public policies.

I suspect that this may be the only book by an economist that discusses how the Buddhist meditation techniques taught by Jon Kabat-Zinn (for example in his book Wherever You Go, There You Are) affect human happiness in a controlled experiment. It turns out that the "treatment group", which meditated for eight weeks, compared to the control group, which did not do so, when interviewed 4 months after the eight week treatment, were happier by 20 percentile points. This is a very large effect.
27 von 32 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
And this pursuit... 7. März 2005
Von John Fabian - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Happiness as a cornerstone of public policy? Happiness as a determining factor in economic decisions? Whose happiness, yours, mine? Well, yes, and ours. Richard Layard makes a convincing and in my opinion long overdue argument for making happiness a benchmark in our policy decisions, both public and private.

This isn't just a pie-in-the-sky whimsical new age thought. Mr. Layard reasons from definable, measurable, empirical data. He's an economist after all. Having said that you might think this is a dense, gross-national-product-per-capita kind of tome. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Mr. Layard's style is conversational and easily accessible. It's slyly thought provoking. The footnotes and reference sections will enable anyone looking for more data to be even happier.

I'm happy I read this book. I recommend it to everyone who is ready for a new look on the dismal science.
8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A better book is available 4. Dezember 2008
Von Dale E. Miller - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
If you're seeking a brief, readable book that discusses what contemporary psychology and biology has to say about happiness, you would do well to pass over Layard and pick up Daniel Nettle's Happiness: The Science Behind your Smile. They cover similar territory, but Nettle packs more information into fewer pages and conveys it with far greater precision.
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