Is Greece ready for a dose of happiness?
A debate in English as part of the international series of panel discussions entitled Battle of Ideas....
Citibank’s 2005 advertising campaign in Greece was entitled (‘Happiness is written with an ‘E’, not a ‘€’) - might now appear unthinkably cynical. ‘Happiness’ did not seem to equate to this summer’s images of bloody violence as protestors clashed with police in Syntagma Square, in scenes becoming so familiar that some European commentators dubbed such stand-offs ‘the new Greek ritual.’ Yet the Citibank campaign was based, apparently, on “new research” that is routinely used to underpin arguments that the ‘relentless pursuit’ of economic growth and productivity not only fails to make us happy but is ‘socially divisive’ and ‘environmentally destructive’ to boot.
Outside Greece, indeed, happiness has increasingly become a serious focus of policy for Western governments, seemingly heightened since the financial crisis took hold. In the UK, economist Richard Layard has advocated a new ‘science of happiness’ which seeks to revolve the apparent paradox of individuals seemingly becoming unhappier even as society grows wealthier and materially more developed. With some happiness experts heralding ancient Athens as the spiritual and intellectual home of debates over ‘the good life’, there are growing calls for Greece to take up these concerns in the modern age.
The Battle of Ideas 2011 is an annual initiative which started from the Institute of Ideas and was organized and supported by collaborators and sponsors all over the world promoting in this way free thinking and vivid exchange of ideas. The initiative originally started by individuals , such as students, academicians, professors who often meet to present their new ideas and discuss current issues as well as to find ways to support and promote their topics.
|Organizer||Hellenic American Union, Institute of ideas|
|Venue||Hellenic American Union Theatre|
|Type||Talk - Presentation|
|Participants||Daniel Ben-Ami, Ashley Frawley, Onic V Palandjian, stelios Virvidakis, Nick Sotirakopoulos|
|Admission Fee||Admission is free to the public|