What is bittersweet nostalgia?
- 8 years agoFavorite Answer
The term nostalgia describes a sentimentality for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations. The word is a learned formation of a Greek compound, meaning "pain, ache", and was coined by a 17th century medical student to describe the anxieties displayed by Swiss mercenaries fighting away from home. Described as a medical condition—a form of melancholy—in the Early Modern period, it became an important trope in Romanticism.
In common, less clinical usage, nostalgia can refer to a general interest in the past, their personalities, and events, especially the "good old days" from one's earlier life.
The scientific literature on nostalgia is quite thin, but a few studies have attempted to pin down the its essence and causes. Smell and touch are strong evokers of nostalgia due to the processing of these stimuli first passing through the amygdala, the emotional seat of the brain. These recollections of our past are usually important events, people we care about, and places where we have spent time. Music can also be a strong trigger of nostalgia.Source(s): wiki//
- CWLv 46 years ago
Nostalgia is subjective. If you had a great childhood but then your city was hit by a nuclear weapon and your family all died, you may spend the rest of your life in a nostalgic state longing or the old times before the nuclear event. You may get married and start a family in an attempt to recreate the old times, but come up short.
Nostalgia can be a good thing. I embrace nostalgia at Christmas time and have a very good time even though I'm separated from my parents and siblings. There's nothing wrong with being nostalgic provided it doesn't affect your day to day life.
Some people live in a Wizard of Oz state when it comes to nostalgia. They continually try to get back to their past and go to great efforts to create the tornado that whisks them away to Oz. For those who do this sort of thing, more power to you if you are truly finding yourself. For those who are not finding themselves, move on and create new memories.
Nostalgia is neither wrong nor good. Psychologists have found that some people really do find new happiness by connecting with the past, while others find sadness. It is really up to you and what nostalgia can bring to your life.
I personally love nostalgia. I like to go back to the 70's in the back woods of Oregon. I don't know of a better time, which is typical of a nostalgic person who will claim that the 40's were better, or the 50's, or the 60's. It doesn't really matter. What matters is where your nostalgia takes you.