Well-Being and War
14 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2013
Date Written: October 22, 2013
Happiness research has dealt with a great number of determinants of well-being but has neglected the effect of war. Wars drastically reduce people’s happiness. The large psychic costs of soldiers, the suffering of civilians, and the material destruction are well documented. An important issue for happiness research is how to calculate the forgone well-being of the people killed in war. Wars may also increase happiness by providing shared experiences, raising national pride, and “ennobling” people. “Combat flow” increases an individual soldier’s subjective happiness. Deep issues are elicited regarding what type of happiness is legitimate.
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