Polycrisis and depression in the 21st century

Michael Roberts Blog

‘Polycrisis’ is the buzz word among leftists right now. The word expresses the coming together and interlocking of various crises: economic (inflation and slump); environmental (climate and pandemic); and geopolitical (war and international divisions).Indeed, I raised a similar idea early last year.

So it is no surprise that the latest Human Development Report from the UN is so shocking. According to the HDR, the world is more pessimistic than at any point in modern history stretching back to before WW1.

The HDR analysed language trends in books over the past 125 years. It reveals a sharp increase in expressions reflecting “cognitive distortions associated with depression and other forms of mental distress”. Over the past two decades the language reflecting overly negative perceptions of the world and its future has surged. Indeed, today’s distress levels are unprecedented, exceeding those during the Great Depression and both world wars.

What’s also revealing…

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