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Common Academic Experience Archive: 2010-2011: The Geography of Bliss

See previous common books, including information about the book, author biography, and PSCC projects relating to the book.

2010-2011 Common Book

Book Description

Part foreign affairs discourse, part humor, and part twisted self-help guide, this book takes the reader from America to Iceland to India in search of happiness, or, in the crabby author's case, moments of "un-unhappiness." The book uses a mixture of travel, psychology, science and humor to investigate not what happiness is, but where it is. Are people in Switzerland happier because it is the most democratic country in the world? Do citizens of Singapore benefit psychologically by having their options limited by the government? Is the King of Bhutan a visionary for his initiative to calculate Gross National Happiness? Why is Asheville, North Carolina, so darn happy? NPR correspondent Weiner answers those questions and many others, offering travelers of all moods some interesting new ideas for sunnier destinations and dispositions. -From publisher description


"A self-proclaimed grump, Weiner has spent a decade as a foreign correspondent for National Public Radio, giving him ample opportunity to view the human condition around the world. Intrigued by the ingredients for bliss, he consulted with a Dutch professor of happiness studies, who set him off on a journey to visit places known to have happiness indexes." -From Booklist

Eric Weiner has been a correspondent for National Public Radio in India, New York, Miami, and Washington, D.C., and traveled to over 30 countries in the past decade.  In 1994, Mr. Weiner was part of an NPR team that received a Peabody Award for a series of reports on the U.S. tobacco industry. He has also reported for the New York Times and was a Knight Fellow at Stanford University.  His commentaries have appeared in many prominent national publications.

The biography (above) is from the author's official website.


In addition to writing novels, Weiner has also published articles in various periodicals and aired pieces on National Public Radio. Here are a few of these: