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New PDF release: A Watched Pot: How We Experience Time

By Michael G. Flaherty

ISBN-10: 0814726879

ISBN-13: 9780814726877

Time, it's been acknowledged, is the enemy. In an period of harried lives, time turns out more and more necessary as hours and days telescope and our lives frequently appear to be flitting earlier. And but, at different instances, the mins drag on, each one tick of the clock excruciatingly drawn out. What explains this seeming paradox? established upon a whole decade's empirical study, Michael G. Flaherty's new ebook deals outstanding insights in this so much common human adventure. Flaherty surveys hundreds of thousands of people of every age in an try to make certain how such phenomena as pain, violence, possibility, boredom, pleasure, focus, surprise, and novelty effect our conception of time. Their tales make for fascinating interpreting, via turns generic and unique, mundane and dramatic, terrible and humorous. A qualitative and quantitative travel de strength, A Watched Pot provides what could be the 1st absolutely built-in thought of time and should be of curiosity to scientists, humanists, social scientists and the proficient public alike. a decision impressive educational ebook.

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Sample text

The conscientious student of lived duration must somehow come to grips with a facet of subjectivity that is paradoxical, variegated, and taken for granted by laypeople and scientists alike. In this chapter, I attempt to describe the full range of variation in the perceived passage of time. It is my intention to map the contours of lived duration, thereby marking the perimeter of that territory which is explored more thor20 Paradoxical Variation / 21 oughly in the chapters that follow this one. Consequently, only enough of the data are introduced here to establish the extent of variation, not to account for it.

Such experi­ ences have little if any effect on us physically, but, by offending our sensibilities, they make for the kind of suffering that occasions protracted duration. For instance, I once wit­ nessed a sociological presentation during which the researchers played a videotape from a pornographic film. ” “It seemed interminable. ”11 Offensive experiences provide a convenient transition to consideration of the emotions that result from our bruised sensibilities. Indeed, the catalog of offensive experiences segues quickly into unpleasant combinations of disability and sentimentality.

Careful review of the narrative materials gradually revealed several clear themes with regard to the nature of the cir­ cumstances. In descending order of frequency, these themes are (1) suffering and intense emotions, (2) violence and danger, (3) waiting and boredom, (4) altered states, (5) concentration and meditation, and (6) shock and novelty. These themes can be thought of as the sufficient causes of protracted duration. In other words, each of these factors is capable of bringing about the perception that time is passing slowly, but none of them are necessary for the ex­ perience of protracted duration.

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A Watched Pot: How We Experience Time by Michael G. Flaherty

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