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    How people across the UK experience and perceive happiness in their lives and their society

    Tross, David (2021) How people across the UK experience and perceive happiness in their lives and their society. PhD thesis, Birkbeck, University of London.

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    The past 40 years have seen concerted efforts to measure happiness at national and international levels in response to evidence that higher levels of affluence do not seem to be associated with greater well-being in Western countries. ‘Happiness studies’ have become a significant part of public policy, with a UK Government-backed happiness index (ONS 2019) one of a series of national and international initiatives (UNSDN 2019). However, an over-reliance on quantitative data generated through numerical self-reports has meant that a limited, thin- sliced picture of happiness has emerged (Thin 2012; Cieslik 2017) through these social surveys. I will argue that the ontological and epistemological assumptions represented in the majority of these studies neglect a more complex, processual and normative dimension about what matters to people (Sayer 2011) that can only be accessed through interpretive accounts. In order to better understand how people experience and perceive happiness in their lives and their society, this qualitative research project adopts an interpretive approach through secondary analysis of 200 happiness accounts generated through a 2013 Mass Observation directive.


    Item Type: Thesis
    Copyright Holders: The copyright of this thesis rests with the author, who asserts his/her right to be known as such according to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. No dealing with the thesis contrary to the copyright or moral rights of the author is permitted.
    Depositing User: Acquisitions And Metadata
    Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2021 10:24
    Last Modified: 01 Nov 2023 14:38


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