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Still Bored in a Culture of Entertainment: Rediscovering Passion & Wonder Paperback – October 16, 2002


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: IVP Books (October 16, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0830823085
  • ISBN-13: 978-0830823086
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #214,816 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"In an age when couch potatoes surf the Web looking for a diversion from the boredom of existence, Richard Winter has not only diagnosed the debilitating disease but prescribed a cure. Read the book. It's good medicine for the soul!" (James W. Sire, author of The Universe Next Door (IVP))

About the Author

Dr. Richard Winter, husband and father of four grown children, is a psychotherapist, counselor and professor of practical theology at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. A native of Britain, he trained in medicine and psychiatry in England and has lived in the United States since 1992. His books include Still Bored in a Culture of Entertainment and Perfecting Ourselves to Death.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Good stuff nonetheless.
Edward J. Vasicek
I found it psychologically insightful, thoroughly constructive, and spiritually uplifting.
Travis Dougherty
I highly recommend this well-written work.
"rhinohamilton"

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Edward J. Vasicek on April 14, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Still Bored in a Culture of Entertainment discusses the rise of boredom in modern culture from a Christian perspective. Winter, a Psychiatrist and theology professor at Covenant Seminary (in St. Louis) looks at the subject of boredom from various angles.

He discusses the two main types of boredom (short term and the more permanent type), analyzes trends in modern culture that nurture boredom (over stimulation and constant entertainment), and how personality types make one more or less prone to boredom. He also documents how boredom has been viewed over the ages.

Winter analyzes how post-modern philosophy contributes toward indifference and meaninglessness, how boredom encourages addictive behavior or risk taking, and then offers a battle plan for the Christian to tackle boredom through six steps (remember the big picture, delight in the simple and ordinary, cultivate wonder, develop strong interests, actively engage instead of passively expecting others to initiate).

Some quotables include: "Boredom is a subtle form of negative thinking...", "...to the contemporary mind, goodness and beauty often seem boring and unstimulating...", and, "experience and intuition are supported by research that has found links between boredom and all sorts of negative states of mind and behavior..."

Much of the material in this book can be expanded upon by reading these three volumes, "Bowling Alone", "Natural Prozac", and "The Overspent American." I think this is a fine book, though a bit boring at times (sorry, but it is true!). Good stuff nonetheless.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By M. P. Ryan on August 20, 2004
Format: Paperback
"Despite its extraordinary variety of diversions and resources, its frenzy for spectacles and its feverish pursuit of entertainment, America is bored. The abundance of efforts made in the United States to counter boredom have defeated themselves, and boredom has become the disease of our time" (13).

If this is true and boredom is the disease of our time, then Richard Winter is the physician who has studied boredom's pathology and holds out a promising cure. Beginning with an investigation into the causes of boredom, Winter commences by considering how understimulation, repetition and a sense of disconnection all contribute to boredom. He differentiates two varieties of boredom (short-term and longer-term boredom). And then, in light of what appears to be a marked increase in boredom in recent years, considers how an increase in leisure time, a dependence upon technology, and the overstimulation produced by the hydra of the entertainment and advertising industries, each contribute to complacency and relate to boredom.

Throughout the mid chapters, Winter angles his investigation to include further psychological and historical factors. Why some people are more likely to get bored than others is the first question to be discussed. Distinguishing between boredom, depression and the apathy of grief follows. This second topic is dealt with at greater length with the reader being treated to a `trip back in time' in order to compare the contemporary phenomena of boredom with experiences of boredom in medieval times. While the author appears concerned that his readers may not want to traverse the ages with him, I am sure most will; especially as it is here that boredom is best described and we are brought face-to-face with the phenomena of boredom and its various guises.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Steven Marusich on November 8, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is for everyone who finds themselves bored with 'nothing to do' on Friday nights, who thinks there are '100 channels but nothing on', or has wiped out surfing the web. It challenges the way we think about and spend our leisure time. Winter shows the roots and causes of our American boredom, combining his expertise in the Bible and in psychiatry (in addition to his own love of art, theater, and gardening) to point to a more fulfilling world and lifeview.
This book will make you think about the attitude with which you do the most menial and trivial tasks. It changed the speed at which I eat my meals. I highly recommend it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Books-In-Brief on February 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
In a world thoroughly permeated with entertainment sources such as iPads, netbooks, Blackberry phones, television programs, and the Internet, psychiatrist Richard Winter argues that we are a culture more bored than ever.

Winter describes the prevalence of boredom in today's culture by describing how we are constantly engrossed in entertainment, from electronic games and television to the Internet and the joys of consumerism. As a result of constantly being immersed in various forms of entertainment, we have become not content but dissatisfied with our lives, always seeking new distractions and more extreme and risky methods of satiating our discontent.

Our incessant saturation with entertainment ultimately leads to what Winter calls a "deadness of the soul", an overpowering feeling of indifference and callousness towards life. Winter then traces the concept of boredom from medieval times through today's postmodern era.

After a survey of the causes and consequences of boredom, Winter finally offers practical advice for thriving in a bored world, including remembering the big picture, finding delight in the simple things of life, and practicing "active engagement" as opposed to slothfully expecting to be relieved of boredom. Winter, a Christian, also argues that victory over boredom can be found in seeking God and reflecting upon his character, his creation, and resting in the fact that we are not made to find ultimate contentment in anything this side of heaven except in our relationship to God.

While I appreciated Winter's thorough study of the causes of boredom, I admit that I became, well, bored with this book. I started to read this book three times before I was finally able to plow through its entire contents.
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