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IDS 101: Well Being: Getting Started

Scrabble tiles on marble spelling the word Wellbeing

Well Being

What is it and how can I get some? In the history of human civilizations a variety of competing conceptions of well-being recur: minimalism, hedonism, egoism, altruism, anarchism, theism, pragmatism, expressionism, optimism, communalism, nationalism, liberalism, pluralism, perspectivism, cosmopolitanism, holism and futurism among them. They vary widely in terms of their respective emphases on knowledge, nature, sociality, identity, authenticity, stability, creativity, technology, longevity and so on. How does one make sense of all this in the contemporary moment, while being aware of our own cognitive blind-spots and avoiding political partisanship, commercial fads and escapist fantasies? In this colloquium we will read a novel (DeLillo’s White Noise, 1985), review select aspects of the historical record, watch a few films and documentaries, consider relevant scientific studies, mine the data, consult global and domestic polls, interview seemingly happy people, chat a bunch and do some writing.

Course taught by: Sammy Basu                                                                                                    Colloquium Associate: Colby Alexander

Authoritative Reference Sources vs Wikipedia

Wikipedia is a great resource for getting general info about something, but because anyone can contribute or change its content, it is sometimes considered unreliable.  It is a good place to start your research, but it is best to double check what you find against other sources.  

Consider consulting the library's print or electronic encyclopedias, dictionaries, or other reference books to backup the basic information of your paper.  Reference books can provide a general overview of a topic and help identify synonyms, related terms, or basic data; these sources often include references and lists of further readings.  Additionally, these resources have typically gone through an editorial process to check for accuracy.  To the right and below are some resources that may be of use.

Reference E-books

Online Collection of Reference Resources

Reference Books (Print)