Top positive review
How to build more empathy in a society increasingly isolated
January 1, 2020
Kaitlin Ugolik Phillips handles a subject of incredible importance: how is our society changed by technology in terms of isolating the individual, desensitzing them to the human condition, loneliness and a lack of compassion at work and at home?
The problem with this book is that the subject is gigantic and while the author touches on important points, I feel she missed the central point on compassion and that is culture and family. The book has chapters that deal with technology as dehumanizing and dangerous (in terms of facial recognition and biometric data gatherers, so right, I give her points there), what big companies are doing that add to the problem (this was, I think scantily handled) and what could be done (again, here it was spend money in the community--what if you could take all the corporate profits from, say Amazon, and spend them what would you do to improve life? But didn't address corporate culture across much of America, where workers are discouraged from taking vacation, sick days ---even going home!) To me, that section on corporate awareness (or unawareness) of the issue of isolation and lack of feeling was very telling in the book.
The author does deal with the increased use cell phones by children and our obsession with Twitter and Facebook to substitute for human interaction face to face,.
But I felt there was a core missing from this book; perhaps it is my age: I'm probably decades older than the author and I have an inkling on what is happening compared to life in the Fifties, and in my parents' generation in the Thirties. I didn't find core psychology, sociological changes and behavioral considerations that I would have included.
So while this is a very good start on what is going on and why it's dangerous, I feel the book continually misses the point.
Still, I recommend reading The Future of Feeling because it will wake you up to your own disconnection and perhaps you will get discussions going for making changes at home. Because we all can make changes where we are, like dropping a stone in a pond; the ripples spread widely.
I'd recommend this book highly for book clubs, therefore.