Call for short essays on new International Blog “Varieties of Well-Being”

Owen Flanagan and Wenqing Zhao write…

As part of our Templeton-St. Louis funded “Varieties of Well-Being” project, Owen Flanagan and Wenqing Zhao are inaugurating an international blog on well-being in different cultural traditions. We desire to engage in public outreach and to advance the cause of cross-cultural philosophy of well-being. In addition, we seek to help create a passion among people in and outside academia for learning from, not just about, other traditions. An international blog on comparative well-being is designed to share the fruit of the project with broader, international audiences.

We hereby invite you, as someone with experience of multicultural worlds, to write a short essay (200-450 words) on well-being that involves a comparative or cross-cultural aspect. It can be based on your own cultural experience or something that you have observed; a story, a moment or a piece of thought that showcases the variety of cultural norms for living a good life. Details follow below!

We will publish a “Seasonal Question” every three months to prompt your thoughts, and ideally your essay would try to answer the particular seasonal question. We will select and publish the short essays on our Facebook page and the Center for Comparative Philosophy website (

The Seasonal Question for Summer 2016 is: Is there a specific virtue that you see as not emphasized enough in your cultural tradition (either the tradition you grew up with or are living in right now) and yet you think is key to happiness and flourishing? Specific examples are welcomed.

Please send your essay, a picture, and a one-sentence biography to Dr. Wenqing Zhao ( as soon as possible but by 31 August 2016 at the latest. We are excited to read about your thoughts and to share them with a wide audience!

Check out our website and give our FB page a thumbs up!

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