Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Eric's Learnedly Optimistic and Authentically Happy

Laura Vivanco

Eric's over at Romancing the Blog today. Building on the work of Martin Seligman, Eric's "hunch, which I plan to test across the next few months, is that romance novels are often primers in positive psychology, in ways that measure up quite well against current research." He'd like some suggestions:
what romance novels have you read that particularly picked up your mood? Are there books that you return again and again to for some sort of encouragement or “lift”? Any especially resilient or optimistic characters or authors I should investigate? Any tough sells or counter-examples I’d better consider if I want to keep this inquiry honest?
Please go to Romancing the Blog if you think you can help him out. And since I'm trying to be optimistic, I'll use too many exclamation marks and add that I'm sure you can!!!

The paintings are both by Bartolomé Esteban Perez Murillo (1617-1682). The first is of a Boy with a Dog and the second is
Two Women at a Window, painted in 1670, Murillo is able to capture the gentle amusement of a young teenage girl, perhaps in observing from afar a handsome would-be suitor, while her governess, above and behind her, discreetly hides her knowing laughter behind a head scarf. (Lane)

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