Nostalgia: Was life better in the past?

May 30th 2019, 08.30-09.30

The Fable, 52 Holborn Viaduct, London, EC1A 2FD

There’s a lot to worry about in 2019. Between Brexit, Climate Breakdown, Cybersecurity fears and Game of Thrones ending there’s no shortage of bad news stories. But is life today really worse than it was in the past?

Our Optimism monitor has found that 37% of British adults think it is – with women, Millennials and middle earners all among the demographic groups more likely than not to be nostalgic.

Nostalgia is already present in many aspects of consumer and citizen life, from politics that promote the idea of a ‘better yesterday’ to brands like discount supermarket Jack’s and the resurgence of vinyl and cassette, Routemaster buses and more.

Difficulties in the present and uncertainty about the future help drive a sepia-tinged view of the past but this perception doesn’t always stack up with reality. We live longer and earn more then we did 50 years ago – so why do so many want to return to a so-called ‘golden age’?

Join us for breakfast on May 30th 2019 as we look to the past, present and future to understand the appeal of nostalgia and the role it plays in our lives today. 

Please email Tom ( to reserve your complimentary place and join us for breakfast.

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