Darrin M. McMahon Happiness: A History

ISBN 13: 9780802142894

Happiness: A History

3,73 valoración promedio
( 243 valoraciones por Goodreads )
 
9780802142894: Happiness: A History

Today, human beings tend to think of happiness as a natural right. But they haven’t always felt this way. For the ancient Greeks, happiness meant virtue. For the Romans, it implied prosperity and divine favor. For Christians, happiness was synonymous with God. Throughout history, happiness has been equated regularly with the highest human calling, the most perfect human state. Yet it’s only within the past two hundred years that human beings have begun to think of happiness as not just an earthly possibility but also as an earthly entitlement, even an obligation. In this sweeping new book, historian Darrin M. McMahon argues that our modern belief in happiness is the product of a dramatic revolution in human expectations carried out since the eighteenth century.
In the tradition of works by Peter Gay and Simon Schama, Happiness draws on a multitude of sources, including art and architecture, poetry and scripture, music and theology, and literature and myth, to offer a sweeping intellectual history of man’s most elusive yet coveted goal.

"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

From The Washington Post:

Even when the subject is, alluringly, happiness, readers may fear that a 544-page, heavily annotated book will be a dry, abstruse tome. Be not afraid. Erudite and detailed without being pedantic, Happiness is lively, lucid and enjoyable. Darrin M. McMahon's history of happiness concentrates on the great books of the Western world. From ancient Greek tragedies' portrayal of happiness as a gift of the gods, through Roman celebrations of everyday comforts and pleasures, the medieval Christian focus on eternal bliss, and the modern conviction that earthly happiness is not just a right but practically a duty, McMahon traces the way conceptions of happiness have changed. The author, a professor of history at Florida State University, demonstrates "not only the centrality of the issue of happiness to the Western tradition, but the centrality of that same tradition and legacy to contemporary concerns." His book abounds with intriguing material. For example, it shows how G.K. Chesterton's aphorism "The world is full of Christian ideas gone mad" applies to happiness: Just as Christianity promises heaven, various secular thinkers came to promise heaven on earth -- earthly happiness -- to those who followed the true path. Conversely, McMahon points out that "the church could scarcely fail to present [its eternal] reward in terms that appealed directly to the senses. Beatitude would satisfy our hunger, quench our thirst, gratify all our longings." In the theology of St. Thomas Aquinas, in heaven "the saved will literally be drunk on God." Some Christian mystics even described divine rapture in such "frankly erotic terms" as "the cleaving to the breast of Mary and the taking in of her warm milk." Readers may be tempted to conclude that Christianity is full of worldly ideas gone mad. Also noteworthy is McMahon's observation that traditionally, "a life of privilege was a life without labor ....That men and women should come to believe -- even to expect -- that work ... should sustain their happiness, serving as a source of satisfaction in its own right, is therefore a recent and quite remarkable development." McMahon displays his gift for nimble commentary by adding that it is "one of the delicious ironies of history" that "Marx's contention that not only should we enjoy the fruits of our labor, but labor itself should be our fruit, is today a central tenet of the capitalist creed." Another particularly delightful exhibition of this knack is his reference to the bourgeoisie as "that amorphous group against whom Romantics and revolutionaries alike constantly railed, even as they freely accepted their funds." The book is further enriched by numerous well-chosen illustrations, including an amusing photograph of an adornment of a bakery in Pompeii. The photograph shows the image of a penis, accompanied by the words "Hic Habitat Felicitas" -- here dwells happiness. McMahon's discussion is generally excellent, sympathetic without being uncritical, but occasionally he falters. When considering Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, he criticizes our own society for resembling Huxley's fictional one in that people are "encouraged wherever possible to eradicate the unpleasant rather 'than learning to put up with it.'" But our society has diverse voices, so many of which discourage hedonism that McMahon's criticism is rather hackneyed. In his account of Romanticism, he calls it "a truth" that "suffering [is] necessary to educate the self, to make us more complete human beings." So it is hardly surprising that he accepts Huxley's supposition that in a society where everything is pleasurable, life is bound to revolve around superficial sensory thrills, mindless entertainment and material consumption. This debatable supposition cries out for the balanced and nuanced treatment McMahon gives most of the ideas he discusses. The same point applies to McMahon's uncritical endorsement of the outlook of University of Chicago ethicist Leon R. Kass, the former chair of the Bush administration's Council on Bioethics. This endorsement ignores the reasons why Kass's conservative views are objectionable to many. McMahon maintains that "there is a critical difference between aiming to alleviate senseless suffering and striving to overcome [what Freud called] 'ordinary unhappiness.'" Senseless suffering should be assuaged, he argues, but ordinary unhappiness should be accepted as "inherent to being human." Accordingly, he echoes Kass's antipathy to using medical science " 'beyond therapy' -- beyond, that is, 'the usual domain of medicine and the goals of healing'" to overcome ordinary unhappiness. But McMahon's own recognition that "there is, and can be ... no objective standard of what it is to feel normal, to experience a 'typical' human balance between pleasure and pain" calls the distinction between "senseless suffering" and "ordinary happiness" into question. Furthermore, McMahon's clichéd claim that humans who would manipulate "our genes to enhance our happiness" would "be leaving a piece of their humanity behind" should be assessed in light of a recent suggestion by technology pioneer Ray Kurzweil: The essence of being human lies not in our limitations but in our ability to transcend them. Again, a much more balanced treatment is needed. Fortunately, the book's strengths far outweigh its flaws. Although McMahon neither promises nor delivers the secret of happiness, his book can bring readers the satisfaction of intellectual adventure. Felicia Nimue Ackerman is a professor of philosophy at Brown University. Reviewed by Felicia Nimue Ackerman
Copyright 2006, The Washington Post. All Rights Reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

Before the contemporary onslaught of therapeutic treatments and self-help guidance, the very idea of happiness in this life was virtually unknown. In this eminently readable work, McMahon (Enemies of Enlightenment) looks back through 2,000 years of thought, searching for evidence of how our contemporary obsession came to be. From the tragic plays of ancient Greece to the inflammatory rhetoric of Rousseau and Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence, McMahon delves deeply into the rich trove of texts that elucidate and confirm the development of Western notions of this elusive ideal. In one particularly rousing section, he highlights the breakthrough thinking of German theologian and religious revolutionary Martin Luther. Locked in self-imposed exile in the Augustine Black Monastery in Wittenberg, Luther struggled with a God who punished sinners, then realized that man is "justified—made just, not punished with justice..." and that this life was one to be lived, that man must "drink more, engage in sports and recreation, aye, even sin a little" in order to be happy. Throughout McMahon leads the reader with strong, clear thinking, laying out his ideas with grace, both challenging and entertaining us in equal measure.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

"Sobre este título" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.

Los mejores resultados en AbeBooks

1.

Darrin M. McMahon
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Cantidad: > 20
Librería
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Estado de conservación: New. Brand New. Nº de ref. de la librería 0802142893

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 9,82
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,00
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

2.

McMahon, Darrin M.
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Cantidad: 10
Librería
Paperbackshop-US
(Wood Dale, IL, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción 2006. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería V7-9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 9,69
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,42
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

3.

McMahon, Darrin M.
Editorial: Grove Press
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos PAPERBACK Cantidad: 1
Librería
Qwestbooks COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Press. PAPERBACK. Estado de conservación: New. 0802142893. Nº de ref. de la librería Z0802142893ZN

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 15,93
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

4.

Ben Weider Professor Darrin M McMahon
Editorial: Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States (2007)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
The Book Depository
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. annotated edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. Today, human beings tend to think of happiness as a natural right. But they haven t always felt this way. For the ancient Greeks, happiness meant virtue. For the Romans, it implied prosperity and divine favor. For Christians, happiness was synonymous with God. Throughout history, happiness has been equated regularly with the highest human calling, the most perfect human state. Yet it s only within the past two hundred years that human beings have begun to think of happiness as not just an earthly possibility but also as an earthly entitlement, even an obligation. In this sweeping new book, historian Darrin M. McMahon argues that our modern belief in happiness is the product of a dramatic revolution in human expectations carried out since the eighteenth century.In the tradition of works by Peter Gay and Simon Schama, Happiness draws on a multitude of sources, including art and architecture, poetry and scripture, music and theology, and literature and myth, to offer a sweeping intellectual history of man s most elusive yet coveted goal. Nº de ref. de la librería AAS9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 16,79
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

5.

Ben Weider Professor Darrin M McMahon
Editorial: Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States (2007)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
The Book Depository US
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. annotated edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. Today, human beings tend to think of happiness as a natural right. But they haven t always felt this way. For the ancient Greeks, happiness meant virtue. For the Romans, it implied prosperity and divine favor. For Christians, happiness was synonymous with God. Throughout history, happiness has been equated regularly with the highest human calling, the most perfect human state. Yet it s only within the past two hundred years that human beings have begun to think of happiness as not just an earthly possibility but also as an earthly entitlement, even an obligation. In this sweeping new book, historian Darrin M. McMahon argues that our modern belief in happiness is the product of a dramatic revolution in human expectations carried out since the eighteenth century.In the tradition of works by Peter Gay and Simon Schama, Happiness draws on a multitude of sources, including art and architecture, poetry and scripture, music and theology, and literature and myth, to offer a sweeping intellectual history of man s most elusive yet coveted goal. Nº de ref. de la librería AAS9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 16,87
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

6.

Ben Weider Professor Darrin M McMahon
Editorial: Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States (2007)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
Librería
Book Depository hard to find
(London, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Press / Atlantic Monthly Press, United States, 2007. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. annotated edition. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. Today, human beings tend to think of happiness as a natural right. But they haven t always felt this way. For the ancient Greeks, happiness meant virtue. For the Romans, it implied prosperity and divine favor. For Christians, happiness was synonymous with God. Throughout history, happiness has been equated regularly with the highest human calling, the most perfect human state. Yet it s only within the past two hundred years that human beings have begun to think of happiness as not just an earthly possibility but also as an earthly entitlement, even an obligation. In this sweeping new book, historian Darrin M. McMahon argues that our modern belief in happiness is the product of a dramatic revolution in human expectations carried out since the eighteenth century.In the tradition of works by Peter Gay and Simon Schama, Happiness draws on a multitude of sources, including art and architecture, poetry and scripture, music and theology, and literature and myth, to offer a sweeping intellectual history of man s most elusive yet coveted goal. Nº de ref. de la librería BTE9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 17,61
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

7.

Ben Weider Professor Darrin M McMahon
Editorial: Grove/Atlantic Inc (2006)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Tapa blanda Cantidad: 1
Librería
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove/Atlantic Inc, 2006. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería TH9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 15,65
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,99
De Alemania a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

8.

Darrin M. McMahon
Editorial: Grove Atlantic 2006-12-18, New York (2006)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
Blackwell's
(Oxford, OX, Reino Unido)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Atlantic 2006-12-18, New York, 2006. paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería 9780802142894

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 16,55
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: EUR 3,34
De Reino Unido a Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

9.

Darrin M. McMahon
Editorial: Grove Press (2006)
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 1
Librería
Irish Booksellers
(Rumford, ME, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Grove Press, 2006. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería 0802142893

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 20,96
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

10.

Darrin M. McMahon
ISBN 10: 0802142893 ISBN 13: 9780802142894
Nuevos Cantidad: 2
Librería
BWB
(Valley Stream, NY, Estados Unidos de America)
Valoración
[?]

Descripción Estado de conservación: New. Depending on your location, this item may ship from the US or UK. Nº de ref. de la librería 97808021428940000000

Más información sobre esta librería | Hacer una pregunta a la librería

Comprar nuevo
EUR 21,38
Convertir moneda

Añadir al carrito

Gastos de envío: GRATIS
A Estados Unidos de America
Destinos, gastos y plazos de envío

Existen otras copia(s) de este libro

Ver todos los resultados de su búsqueda