How the Middle Class Is Outsourcing Its Emotional Lives
Whether its finding mates, raising children or making meals, we have given many areas of our once-communal lives over to the marketplace, says UC Berkeley sociology professor Arlie Russell Hochschild.
What's the Latest Development?
Whether its finding mates, raising children or making meals, we have given many areas of our once-communal lives over to the marketplace, says UC Berkeley sociology professor Arlie Russell Hochschild, author of the new book "The Outsourced Self: Intimate Life in Market Times." In 2009, for example, the popular dating site Match.com reported that 56 million introductory emails had been sent. And according to the nonprofit International Coaching Federation, "there are more than 20,000 coaches for life, leadership, business and other fields." The number of service professionals available to us is increasing, not decreasing.
What's the Big Idea?
Hochschild argues that what was once a 'village life' among the middle class has become increasingly commercialized. What is troubling is that families and individuals are handing over emotionally fulfilling experiences to strangers for cash. "These services are only likely to proliferate in a world that undermines community, disparages government, marginalizes nonprofits and believes in the superiority of what's for sale," Hochschild writes. The author is convinced that we won't go back to how it was before "because we don't want to." Still, nearly everyone recognizes a line across which some experiences are too precious to outsource.
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Is it "perverseness," the "death drive," or something else?
A growing body of research shows promising signs that the keto diet might be able to improve mental health.
- The keto diet is known to be an effective tool for weight loss, however its effects on mental health remain largely unclear.
- Recent studies suggests that the keto diet might be an effective tool for treating depression, and clearing up so-called "brain fog," though scientists caution more research is necessary before it can be recommended as a treatment.
- Any experiments with the keto diet are best done in conjunction with a doctor, considering some people face problems when transitioning to the low-carb diet.
It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.
- It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
- Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
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