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By S. Burnett

Explores why modern Anglo-American society is keen about happiness. Striving to feel free is now a morally valuable pursuit. throughout the lens of novel social conception, this ebook explicates how this has transpired as outcome of a posh 'conspiracy of coordination' among political, organisational and mental advancements.

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Additional resources for The Happiness Agenda: A Modern Obsession

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Such views are clearly mirrored in the above expositions of capitalism as functioning through different actors’ relations with objects and templates, whose very existence acts to reflect, maintain and reinforce the “new” ideas of how the world should be: “They do not only tell managers how to manage their organizations, they also tell them what kind of people they should become in order to be happy and morally conscious citizens with fulfilling lives” (Bos, 2000: 22, cited in Thrift, 2005f: 95–6).

It, and the cultural circuits upon which it rests, promote and are largely dependent upon the hegemonic, predatory predominantly North American business model of short-term, high-profit returns (cf. Galbraith, 1996; Gray, 2002; Hutton, 2002), which is “inclined to pursue changes in work organizations and practices even though the weak might pay the price” (Sennett, 1999: 53). There is then no guarantee that the process of producing fast subjects, which are capable of functioning in, and therefore should ideally be able to maintain, this fast “new” capitalist world, “can or will succeed” (Thrift, 2005h: 152, 136).

As indicated above, a common feature of a number of consultancies is the claim to offer their remedying services in an attractive, functional and simplistic package: “to meet the competitive requirements for the times” (Fincham and Clark, 2002: 1). ” (2003: 3, emphasis added). 26 The Happiness Agenda In response, a number of academics and journalist-cum-commentators on global political-economy (such as Hutton, 1996; 2002, and Wheen, 2004) propose a definitive watershed in recent AngloAmerican history that instigated influential political, economic and social changes that contributed significantly to the emergence of “new” capitalism.

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