You’d think author and speaker Helen Russell — whose professional obsession for the past few years has been happiness — would be loathe to discuss the topic of sadness. Au contraire. As she’s learned more about what it takes to be happy, she’s discovered it relies on perfecting the lost (at least in America) art of being sad. We talk with Helen about her book How to be Sad, discuss why American culture is particularly bad at embracing melancholy, and discover what we could all learn from those strapping Danes.
On the agenda:
-Making Space for Sadness, in all its flavors [3:51-9:14]
-Cross-Cultural Comparisons [9:15-12:54]
-Gender and the emotions we're allowed to access [12:55-17:54]
-The emotional burden of an artless life [17:55-23:48]
-Our atrophied social connections [23:49-29:24]
-Inequality, addiction, and social media [29:25-36:54]
-Raising kids and deciding to have them in the first place [36:55-44:21]
-Sadness taboos and rituals [44:22-48:33]
-Diagnosing Brexit (and other dark times) [48:34-53:58]
-Sadness Post-Script [54:28-1:24:32]
Uncertain Things is hosted and produced by Adaam James Levin-Areddy and Vanessa M. Quirk. For more doomsday rumination, subscribe to: uncertain.substack.com.