Bad News Blues

An Indian man reads a newspaper with the news featuring the crash of a Malaysia Airlines plane carrying 298 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur at a newspaper stand in Siliguri on July 18,2014. (Diptendu Dutta/AFP/Getty Images)

The onslaught of bad news seems relentless. Here are just a few of the stories we have been following this summer: the wars in Gaza and Syria, the fighting in Iraq, a Malaysia Airlines jet shot down over Ukraine, another missing since March, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and here in the U.S., the crisis on the border and floods and fires in the West.

So what are the effects of consuming so much bad news? Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson asks Eric Wilson, an English professor at Wake Forest University and author of “Everyone Loves a Good Train Wreck: Why We Can’t Look Away.”

“Watching this stuff can bring out the best in us and the worst in us,” he says. “So it’s good to be careful with it.”

Guest

  • Eric G. Wilson, the Thomas H. Pritchard Professor of English at Wake Forest University and author of “Everyone Loves a Good Train Wreck: Why We Can’t Look Away” (read an excerpt here).
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