Book Club: Natural Causes discussion thread #2

Welcome back!

Next week, we’ll read chapters 7 and 8. This week, chapters 4, 5 and 6 of Natural Causes by Barbara Ehrenreich.

This week covers a gamut of topics and some really compelling ideas about the value and recency of fitness. For those who read Nickel and Dimed by Ehrenreich, there’s also a bit of a return to form about class and work in here.

So, some things I’d love to hear your views on:

  • Self help gets a pretty thorough take down, as do the conceit behind employee wellness programs and corporate America’s push to get their workers moving. Have you ever had a positive or negative experience with “wellness” pushed by an employer?

  • “Mindfulness” goes under the microscope, with Enhrenreich becoming skeptical. “The devices that were supposed to make us smarter and more connected to other humans were instead messing with our minds,” she wrote. What do you make of this?

  • I thought her bit about biohacking and points about people treating their bodies as if they were machines was interesting. On one hand, I know that the mentality has been helpful for some of my friends when it comes to establishing a positive routine, but on the other hand it there’s certainly a point where it goes too far. What’s your view?

  • I don’t have a prompt here but her line of “"Every death can now be understood as suicide" was provocative.

Be sure to comment below! Remember, just two chapters next week, one is a bit long.