The "Virtues" of Positive Psychology


Abstract
How have spokespersons for the positive psychology movement presented the movement to the public and to the profession of psychology? Moreover, what are the consequences for psychology of that presentation? These questions inform my assessment of the "virtues" of positive psychology, which I interpret in two ways. First, there are the ways in which the movement implicitly presents itself as virtuous, not least by constituting itself as a corrective to "negative psychology." Second, there are the ways in which Martin Seligman, in calling for a new and discrete scientific enterprise, promotes building "signature strengths" as routes to virtue and thus "authentic happiness." Alternative ways to conceptualize virtue and authenticity are considered, as are the epistemic problems that inhere in movements in general, and the positive psychology movement in particular. 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Keywords positive psychology   movement   psychiatrists
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DOI 10.1037/h0091249
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