How Pleasure Works

How Pleasure Works

Why we like what we like

Summary


Pleasure is one of the most fascinating aspects of being human. But what is it?

Exploring child development, philosophy, neuroscience and behavioural economics, Paul Bloom uncovers how universal habits explain what we like and why we like it.


The average Briton spends over a day a week watching television. People slow their cars to look at gory accidents and go to sentimental movies that make them cry. Some men pay good money to be spanked by prostitutes.

In this revealing and witty account, Paul Bloom examines the science behind these curious desires, attractions and tastes, exploring one of the most fascinating and fundamental engines of human behaviour.


How Pleasure Works has one of the best discussions I've read of why art is pleasurable, why it matters to us, and why it moves us so’ Daniel Levitin, author of This Is Your Brain on Music

Reviews

  • The book inside is an even better book than the one the title promises... Bloom is a superb writer. His gift is in writing beautifully but plainly, and anticipating everything a reader will need to know in order to appreciate the point he will ultimately make...it was a great pleasure to read
    Globe and Mail (Canada)

About the author

Paul Bloom

Paul Bloom is Professor of Psychology at University of Toronto and the Brooks and Suzanne Ragen Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Yale University. His research explores the psychology of morality, identity and pleasure. Bloom is the recipient of multiple awards and honours, including most recently the million-dollar Klaus J. Jacobs Research Prize. He has written for scientific journals such as Nature and Science, and for the New York Times, New Yorker, Atlantic and Guardian. He is the author or editor of eight books, including Just Babies, How Pleasure Works, Descartes' Baby and most recently Against Empathy.
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