Paradox of Affluence

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Paradox of Affluence |

Oxford University professor Avner Offer concluded in a public lecture at the London School of Economics that the paradox of affluence is that “richer is not (much) better.
The Paradox of affluence is the shift in social well-being. It first begins, when a society is being developed, the well-being of its citizens increases based on needs being met. After one’s needs are met, well-being plateaus despite further increases in income. Or despite how wealthy society has become monetarily, it has become, in a sense, morally bankrupt. The research dictates, people who live in richer nations are on average happier and then those living in poor nations. The role of income in fulfilling basic needs helps explain the importance of money for people living in poverty. These basic needs are the foundation for Maslow’s hierarchy theory. Once the need for food, drink, shelter and warmth are met, the happier a person becomes. Once the basic need has been fulfilled, the next need for safety is addressed. Having the ability to provide protection from the elements along with security, order, law and stability moves one to the next step, which is belongingness and love. There satisfying the need for family, affections, love and work are met. Esteem follows and these needs of achievement, independence, and status contributes the both happiness and wealth. Which leads to the final step which is self-actualization, this is the realization of one’s potential, and having the ability to be self-fulfilled.

Baumgardner, S. R., & Crothers, M. K. (2009). Positive Psychology . : Prentice Hall.
Deaton, A. 2008. Income, health, and well-being around the world: Evidence from the Gallup World Poll....

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