How Hard Work in America Has Become a Scam
We do our society a great disservice by associating "having it all" with working long hours, whether at the office or at home--or both, says Boston University professor Ellen Shell.
What's the Latest Development?
The essay "Why Women Still Can't Have It All", written by Princeton professor Anne-Marie Slaughter, who also served as the State Department's former Director of Policy Planning, provoked a national conversation over a diverse range of issues, from gender equality to how modern technology impacts the workplace. An unfortunate assumption of the article, however, was that "having it all" means working your body to the bone, whether at home or at the office--or both. Boston University professor Ellen Shell says Americans should be bolder in their solutions for being overworked--namely, having the courage to work less.
What's the Big Idea?
Since the 1970s, America's annual working hours have been steadily increasing. At the same time, middle-class wages have stagnated or declined. Despite this, Americans work more hours than any other Western nation, says Shell, and this is bad for the economy and bad for our mental and physical well-being. "...we must push hard against our current practice of celebrating overwork and treat it as the scam it has become," she says, referring to how the wages of the upper-class have boomed in the last decade. Will we ever have the courage to mandate that work end at the end of the workday?
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
To create wiser adults, add empathy to the school curriculum.
- Stories are at the heart of learning, writes Cleary Vaughan-Lee, Executive Director for the Global Oneness Project. They have always challenged us to think beyond ourselves, expanding our experience and revealing deep truths.
- Vaughan-Lee explains 6 ways that storytelling can foster empathy and deliver powerful learning experiences.
- Global Oneness Project is a free library of stories—containing short documentaries, photo essays, and essays—that each contain a companion lesson plan and learning activities for students so they can expand their experience of the world.
An extinction events expert sounds a dire warning.
- The supervolcano in Yellowstone National Park could cause an "ultra-catastrophe," warns an extinction events writer.
- The full eruption of the volcano last happened 640,000 years ago.
- The blast could kill billions and make United States uninhabitable.
Just before I turned 60, I discovered that sharing my story by drawing could be an effective way to both alleviate my symptoms and combat that stigma.
I've lived much of my life with anxiety and depression, including the negative feelings – shame and self-doubt – that seduced me into believing the stigma around mental illness: that people knew I wasn't good enough; that they would avoid me because I was different or unstable; and that I had to find a way to make them like me.
A joint study by two England universities explores the link between sex and cognitive function with some surprising differences in male and female outcomes in old age.
- A joint study by the universities of Coventry and Oxford in England has linked sexual activity with higher cognitive abilities in older age.
- The results of this study suggest there are significant associations between sexual activity and number sequencing/word recall in men. In women, however, there was a significant association between sexual activity in word recall alone - number sequencing was not impacted.
- The differences in testosterone (the male sex hormone) and oxytocin (a predominantly female hormone) may factor into why the male cognitive level changes much more during sexual activity in older age.
Mathematicians studied 100 billion tweets to help computer algorithms better understand our colloquial digital communication.