By Luka Zevnik
This ebook offers an interdisciplinary exploration of the origins of happiness within the glossy Western tradition and makes the argument that happiness isn't really common yet is as a substitute a culturally and traditionally particular event, attribute basically to the Western international. It starts with an summary of the most learn techniques to happiness after which experiences the $64000 yet elusive subject matter within the context of tradition and kin of strength. the second one a part of the ebook analyses the social, non secular, moral and political procedures that result in the emergence of the event of happiness, together with client tradition in modern societies. It provides an research of the medieval Christian event which concludes that the fashionable event of happiness purely emerged within the seventeenth and 18th century, whilst the suitable of human life more and more began to be pursued within the current lifestyles. In its end, this booklet explores the idea that of modernization because the collective pursuit of happiness.
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Additional info for Critical Perspectives in Happiness Research: The Birth of Modern Happiness
150). While the anthropology of well-being and the cultural perspective in happiness studies as the (grand)daughter of anthropology still mostly seem to follow this ideal, the postmodern anthropology, on the other hand, has very much questioned the strict scientific foundations of anthropology and its ability to provide accurate descriptions of the world and of (other) cultures. 150). Rather, their position against the ideal of a science of culture was more theoretically profound as they challenged it on ontological, epistemological and ethical grounds.
9). 6), we have to be extremely careful when comparing different cultures in terms of well-being: ‘it is indeed possible to make a comparison of different societies as to well-being, as long as this is done in a careful, culturally sensitive way. 6). 248). Even though the cultural perspective in happiness studies does not proclaim to be following cultural relativism,6 nor does it explicitly criticize survey methods on account of their ethnocentrism, it could be argued that it adheres to all the major methodological tenets of cultural relativism as understood by anthropologists of well-being: A cultural psychological approach does not automatically assume that all behavior can be explained by the same set of constructs and measures, and enquires first whether a given construct is meaningful and how it is used in a given cultural context.
The ideal of cultural relativism that claims to be evaluating cultures in their own unique terms is, thus, ultimately unattainable. 23). Following from this, ‘we do not need a theory of indigenous epistemologies or a new epistemology of the other. 241). 32), ‘interpretative anthropology might best be understood as the reinvigorated and sophisticated heir of (cultural; LZ) relativism’. Happiness, Relations of Power and Cultural Studies While postmodern anthropology reflects on the relations of power primarily in terms of the researcher’s relationship towards the other peoples and cultures he or she is analyzing and interpreting, there is another field of research that prominently supplements the discussion about culture, happiness and power: cultural studies.