UC Berkeley psychologist Dacher Keltner is a pioneer in the study of an emotion known as "elevation," characterized by a "a feeling of spreading, liquid warmth in the chest and a lump in the throat." (Not be confused with heartburn.) Triggering that emotion in the lab is challenging. His research group's latest approach though is to play their subjects Barack Obama's victory speech. (My IFTF colleague Jason Tester
has dubbed the impact of Obama on people's brains "neurobama.") Slate has a great profile of "elevation" research, including the work of moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt, author of The Happiness Hypothesis
. I also look forward to reading Keltner's forthcoming book on the subject of "elevation," titled Born To Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life
(which is not an Obama biography). From Slate:
Elevation has always existed but has just moved out of the realm of philosophy and religion and been recognized as a distinct emotional state and a subject for psychological study. Psychology has long focused on what goes wrong, but in the past decade there has been an explosion of interest in "positive psychology"–what makes us feel good and why. University of Virginia moral psychologist Jonathan Haidt, who coined the term elevation, writes, "Powerful moments of elevation sometimes seem to push a mental 'reset button,' wiping out feelings of cynicism and replacing them with feelings of hope, love, and optimism, and a sense of moral inspiration...."
We come to elevation, Haidt writes, through observing others–their strength of character, virtue, or "moral beauty." Elevation evokes in us "a desire to become a better person, or to lead a better life."
"Obama in Your Heart
, Buy "Born To Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life
, Buy "The Happiness Hypothesis
In University of Pennsylvania psychiatrist Jody Foster’s new book The Schmuck in My Office: How to Deal Effectively with Difficult People at Work, she shares sound advice on dealing with narcissistic co-workers. From an excerpt at Quartz: On a day-to-day basis, appealing to this person’s egocentricity can be very effective. The occasional recognition of the […]
Kory Stamper, author of the new book Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries describes three criteria Merriam-Webster uses for inclusion of words like truther, binge-watch, photobomb and the 1,000 other words that make the cut in a typical year.
I read pretty much every Disneyland history and fact book I find. Chris Strodder’s The Disneyland Encyclopedia: The Unofficial, Unauthorized, and Unprecedented History of Every Land, Attraction, Restaurant, Shop, and Major Event in the Original Magic Kingdom lives up to its massive title. A simple alphabetical listing of just about every First through Fifth order-of-interest […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]
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Even though credit cards now feature an EMV chip for securing transactions, they still have to include the magnetic strip for compatibility with older point of sale systems. Because of this, there’s no way for the chip’s new security capabilities to protect against card skimmers in the wild.How do you protect yourself from legacy-technology-induced fraud? […]