“Bright-Sided”November 24, 2009 at 9:23 am | Posted in Nonfiction | 3 Comments
Fans of The Secret are not going to like this book, but Barbara Ehrenreich doesn’t care. Amazon reviews of Bright-Sided are evenly divided between five stars and one star. (My favorites are “Bitter old woman” and “This book will attract people who are addicted to thought”).
Ehrenreich traces the history of positive thinking in America, a subject that got her attention while she was dealing with breast cancer. She traces the development of this trend and its spread through the medical establishment, the business world, and Christian megachurches. In the end she makes a convincing case for blaming last year’s financial meltdown on the trend of positive thinking.
As usual, she’s compulsively readable, succinct, and bracingly crabby. I’ve said before that she’s my mom crush. Reading this book was a refreshing breath of cool air for me, after a week of intense pressure due to daring to reject consensus opinion. Ehrenreich is brave enough to tackle one of America’s most dearly loved beliefs, and though this book hasn’t been on shelves long, it’s already upset a few apple carts.