The Problem with Individualism

The world became modern when people who met for the first time shifted from asking each other (as they had always done) where they came from — to asking each other…

Winners and Losers in the Race of Life

Our societies have advanced tendencies to label certain people ‘winners’ and others – logically enough – ‘losers’. Aside from the evident meanness of this categorisation, the underlying problem with it is…

Being on the Receiving End of Pity

Given how outright mean many people are, it might be odd to single out as particularly problematic and especially painful a kind of treatment that might, on the surface, seem very…

Shakespeare: 'When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes, I all alone beweep my outcast state...'

When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes, I all alone beweep my outcast state, And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries, And look upon myself and curse my fate,…

Overcoming the Need to Be Exceptional

It’s a rather simple question that quickly gets to the core of someone’s sense of well-being and legitimacy: did your childhood leave you feeling that you were – on balance –…

On the Loss of Reputation

What is reputation? Reputation might be defined as the claim that one can make on the goodwill of strangers; it is what your name will mean to those who don’t know…