The Happiness Industry

  • by William Davies
  • Narrated by Jack Hawkins
  • 8 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

What was a Buddhist monk doing at the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos lecturing the world's leaders on mindfulness? Why do many successful corporations have a chief happiness officer? What can the chemical composition of your brain tell a potential employer about you?
In the past decade, governments and corporations have become increasingly interested in measuring the way people feel: the Happiness index, Gross National Happiness, well-being and positive psychology have come to dominate the way we live our lives. As a result, our emotions have become a new resource to be bought and sold.
In a fascinating investigation combining history, science and ideas, William Davies shows how well-being influences all aspects of our lives: business, finance, marketing and smart technology.
This audiobook will make you rethink everything from the way you work, the power of the Nudge, the ever-expanding definitions of depression, and the commercialization of your most private feelings. The Happiness Industry is a shocking and brilliantly argued warning about the new religion of the age: our emotions.


What the Critics Say

"Deeply researched and pithily argued, Davies's work is a welcome corrective to the glut of semi-scientific happiness books that have become so popular in business and management circles, and which rarely, if ever, acknowledge the larger ideological goals of workplace well-being." (New York Magazine)
"When the 18th-century philosopher Jeremy Bentham suggested that maximising happiness was the job of government, he inspired a quest to measure happiness that continues today. Until recently, the only effective tool for that - as the political scientist Will Davies explains in a forceful new book, The Happiness Industry - has been money." (Observer)
"As Davies implies in this readable, disturbing book, being depressed by the human condition will no longer be socially acceptable, or even an option. The state or big business will soon see to it!" (Independent)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Dry but informative

I mostly read nonfiction books, so I'm well accustomed to a book not being an enthralling read. I typically prefer facts and figures to flowery language or colorful illustrations of the information I'm trying to learn.

So, when I say that this book was "dry" I mean that it was utterly Saharan in delivery. This book has incredible information in it, it is filled with critical data about how we're being manipulated as a people by those who understand the way we thing, but it is not something that is easily approachable.

My biggest grievance against this book is that information it seeks to impart is important and it needs to do so in a way that is more approachable to people who haven't pursued higher education focused on marketing or psychology.
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- NerfHerder42

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-14-2016
  • Publisher: Audible Studios