In his recent exposé, McMindfulness: How Mindfulness Became the New Capitalist Spirituality
(Repeater Books, 2019), Ronald Purser
Ph.D. takes a hard look at the mindfulness movement that has taken society by storm. Purser opens the book by questioning elements of the movement that have lead to its success: its scientific credibility, its secular façade, the prevailing discourse in society around stress, and other topics. Purser’s main concern, however, is that mindfulness is being used to reinforce the capitalist system by absolving companies of any responsibility for its negative consequences, for example work-related mental health problems, and shifting full responsibility onto the shoulders of the individual. Purser also points out how mindfulness is being used in questionable ways in schools, the US military and national governments. Purser ends the book by discussing his vision of a revolutionary, socially-minded, collective-based form of mindfulness. Full of humor and eye-opening anecdotes, McMindfulness
is a thought-provoking book that forces readers to look at the mindfulness movement in a new light.
Alex Carroll studies Buddhist Studies at the University of South Wales and is primarily interested in Theravāda and early Buddhism. He lives in Oslo, Norway and can be reached via his website here.