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Designing Positive PsychologyTaking Stock and Moving Forward$
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Kennon M. Sheldon, Todd B. Kashdan, and Michael F. Steger

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195373585

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373585.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 05 December 2021

The Positive Psychology of Positive Emotions

The Positive Psychology of Positive Emotions

An Avuncular View

(p.101) 7 The Positive Psychology of Positive Emotions
Designing Positive Psychology

Shigehiro Oishi

Jaime L. Kurtz

Oxford University Press

This chapter offers a critique of positive emotion research with the goal of suggesting specific ways positive psychology could move forward. Although research on positive emotion has made tremendous inroads in the past decade, several areas need further addressing. First, positive psychology often appears “thin” at this point, partially because it is not founded in a historical perspective. Second, positive psychologists must make an explicit connection with other contemporary research on the topics relevant to positive psychology (e.g. empathy, willpower, cooperation) to broaden its intellectual base. Third, although most people in the US want to be happier and most positive psychologists want to make people happier as well, it is critical to test the tacit assumption of positive psychology that the happier, the better. Fourth, it is important for positive psychologists to acknowledge that negative emotions play a non-trivial role in a well-lived life, and to begin to fully examine how negative emotions fit into positive psychology. Fifth, although recent intervention studies were successful, it is important to examine the longer-term effects of these interventions in the future.

Keywords:   positive emotion research, psychological research, happiness, negative emotions, positive psychology interventions

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