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Description

Insults are part of the fabric of daily life. But why do we insult each other? Why do insults cause us such pain? Can we do anything to prevent or lessen this pain? Most importantly, how can we overcome our inclination to insult others? In A Slap in the Face, now issued in paperback with a new preface, William Irvine undertakes a wide-ranging investigation of insults, their history, the role they play in social relationships, and the science behind them. He examines not just memorable zingers, such as Elizabeth Bowen's description of Aldous Huxley as "The stupid person's idea of a clever person," but subtle insults as well, such as when someone insults us by reporting the insulting things others have said about us: "I never read bad reviews about myself," wrote entertainer Oscar Levant, "because my best friends invariably tell me about them." Irvine also considers the role insults play in our society: they can be used to cement relations, as when a woman playfully teases her husband, or to enforce a social hierarchy, as when a boss publicly berates an employee. He goes on to investigate the many ways society has tried to deal with insults-by adopting codes of politeness, for example, and outlawing hate speech-but concludes that the best way to deal with insults is to immunize ourselves against them: we need to transform ourselves in the manner recommended by Stoic philosophers. We should, more precisely, become insult pacifists, trying hard not to insult others and laughing off their attempts to insult us. A rousing follow-up to A Guide to the Good Life, A Slap in the Face will interest anyone who's ever delivered an insult or felt the sting of one-in other words, everyone. show more

Book details

EAN

9780190665043

Classifications

Language=> history and general works
Popular philosophy

Format

Paperback / softback

Number of pages

264 pages

Weight(g)

266g

Dimensions(mm)

128 x 177 x 17

Publication date

2017-10-26

Publisher

Oxford University Press Inc

Readership

General (US: Trade)

Series

Series Editor

Imprint

-

Publication City/Country

United States

Language

English

EAN 9780190665043
Classification Language=> history and general works
Popular philosophy
Format Paperback / softback
Number of pages 264 pages
Weight(g) 266g
Dimensions(mm) 128 x 177 x 17
Publication date 2017-10-26
Publisher Oxford University Press Inc
Readership General (US: Trade)
Series
Series Editor
Imprint -
Publication City/Country United States
Language: English

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