Is Shame Necessary?

Jennifer Jacquet
Hardback
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In our individualistic world, is shame an outdated, moralising concept - or is it something that we can rediscover and use in a new way? What can we gain from redefining shame to help solve the social and political issues of our time? The author shows that we have to use shame if we want to bring about political change.
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In Is Shame Necessary? rising star Jennifer Jacquet shows that we have to use shame if we want to bring about political change and hold the powerful to account. In our individualistic world, is shame an outdated, moralising concept - or is it something that we can rediscover and use in a new way? What can we gain from redefining shame to help solve the key social and political issues of our time? In this urgent, illuminating book, Jennifer Jacquet argues that, if we want to make large-scale fixes, we need to become active citizens, ready to find creative ways to shame those who have the power to bring about political and social change but aren't. Individual guilt and modified consumption don't compare to the possibilities of using shame as a non-violent form of resistance. From the mimes hired by the mayor of Bogota in the fight against bad driving behaviour to the online list published by the state of California singling out the top five hundred businesses and individuals who aren't paying their taxes, Jacquet uses real-life examples to show how shaming is relevant to the twenty-first century. Detailing how to change behaviour, she outlines seven habits of highly effective shaming that will allow us to make companies act ethically, hold governments to account when they ignore laws, and get more people to cast their vote. Shaming works best when used sparingly, but when applied in just the right way, in just the right quantity, and at just the right time, it can perhaps keep us from failing ourselves and the planet. Jennifer Jacquet is an assistant professor in the Department of Environmental Studies at New York University. She works at the intersection of conservation and cooperation, focusing on issues such as overfishing and climate change. She formerly wrote the guilty planet blog at Scientific American, contributes to Edge.org, and conceived of the modernized shame totem pole for a presentation in 2011 at the Serpentine Gallery.
 

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ISBN 9781846146114
Publisher ALLEN LANE
Format Hardback
Publication date 17 Feb 2015

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