Peace, war and happiness: Bruder Klaus as wellbeing facilitator


  • Bruno S. Frey University of Zurich


peace, war, happiness, wellbeing, well-being, Civil War, terrorism, Bruder Klaus


Little is known in the scholarly literature about the effect of war and peace on happiness; but they have a large number of direct and indirect effects on happiness, difficult or impossible to capture due mainly to issues of causality and attribution. The paper concentrates on three fundamental claims regarding the effect of war and peace on happiness: ‘War brings happiness’; ‘People adjust to wars’; and ‘The happiness of the dead is irrelevant’. An attempt is made to discuss different solutions to deal with these claims but it is made clear that each one has grave disadvantages. Bruder Klaus, whose full name was Niklaus von Flüeh, is the patron saint of Switzerland. This paper describes Bruder Klaus as a creator of peace and, based on the claims mentioned above, as a felicitator or wellbeing facilitator.


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Author Biography

Bruno S. Frey, University of Zurich

Department of Economics