Tens of thousands of people protested in European cities on Saturday against planned free trade deals with the United States and Canada they say would undermine democracy and lower food safety, environmental and labor standards.
Tear-jerkers such as Adele’s Someone Like You frequently top the charts these days, while gloomy classical compositions like Mozart’s Requiem have moved people for centuries. Both portray and bring about a strong sense of loss and sadness. But our enjoyment of sad music is paradoxical – we go out of our way to avoid sadness in our daily lives. So why is it that, in the arts, themes such as loss can be safely experienced, profoundly enjoyed and even celebrated?