In Jennifer Seniors, “Some Dark Thoughts on Happiness,” Senior proposes a question, Can someone determine how happy you are? Senior starts out by describing her happiness test, which she scored a 2.88 out of 5 on, it was based on her location by zip code, religion, marital status, and income. But did this test actually determine Seniors’ happiness, or did it tell her what her social status is? She then continues to talk about the increase of interest in happiness, which Harvard’s jump in attendance in the course about positive psychology. This have caused an increase in textbooks and classes, which was believed to have showed up in economics first. Senior then talks about what is more likely to make you happy.
Majority believe if you are more religious, in a happy marriage, younger, drink, are smart, or attractive, you are more likely to be happier. Studies show most of these are false, which goes to show, you cannot compare social status to level of happiness. Senior uses Phillips as an example, who believes happiness is “the most conformist of moral aims.” He then goes on to compare the differences in an European novel and a positive psychology book, which he believes is “empty of idiosyncrasy and the difficult passions.” But believes the European book to be complex and well designed. In conclusion, Senior compares the new increase of study in happiness to the so called “tests” that tell ones level of happiness, and how effective they are.