With freedom come choices. Every choice is an opportunity to select the best possible outcome, the one that would make us happiest. More choices lead to more happiness, right? Of course we find the opposite to be true. As choices increase, so does anxiety. In the latest installment of the RSA animated lecture series, Slovenian social and legal theorist Renata Salecl argues that this anxiety, coupled with the capitalist ideal of the self-made person, leads to a kind of social paralysis. “Today’s ideology of choice,” says Salecl, “actually pacifies people and makes us constantly turn criticism to ourselves instead of organizing ourselves and making a critique of the society we live in.” The animated feature was adapted from a lecture Salecl gave last summer in London. (You can watch the entire lecture here.) It draws on ideas presented in her book, Choice.
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