According to a new study, Russians dwell on gloomy thoughts more than Americans, but are less likely to let it all get to them. We read:
Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy portrayed Russians as a brooding, complicated people, and ethnographers have confirmed that Russians tend to focus on dark feelings and memories more than Westerners do. But a new University of Michigan study finds that even though Russians tend to brood, they are less likely than Americans to feel as depressed as a result.
Not mentioned, it seems, is the obvious explanation: Russians, as far as I can tell, expect the world to be a cruel and pitiless place, and life to be a cold, weary, grueling and ultimately futile struggle — and they don’t have to listen all day long to pop-psych bubbleheads and workplace-fulfillment-counselors telling them how happy they are supposed to be.
I’d be cheerier too.