On Sept 9, ScienceFriday talked to two experts on happiness, Daniel Nettle and Gregory Berns. Both have new books about happiness.
Berns posits that happiness is more about the brain’s response to novelty rather than actual pleasure. Nettle argues that women display both more positive emotions and more negative ones. Not much scholarly here, but an interesting listen if you’re goning on a long trip; or you might want to pick up one of these two books:
"Happiness: The Science behind your smile," by Daniel Nettle. Oxford University Press, 2005.
"Satisfaction: The Science of Finding True Fulfillment," by Gregory Berns. Henry Holt, 2005.
You can listen to the show from the link above, or you can get the transcript on LexisNexis, if you’d rather read the show than listen to it.