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Germany

Working Out Is Good For You ... Until It's Not

In Germany, eight university hospitals have opened outpatient sports psychiatry facilities to treat depression for the “over-worked-out.”

Sound body, unsound mind?
Sound body, unsound mind?
Claudia Liebram

BERLIN — These days, anybody who doesn’t work out for at least an hour and a half a week has to ask themselves if they really, truly care about their health. But as is so often the case in life, here too it seems that too much of a good thing can be, well, bad. Doctors are cautioning that people who exercise beyond their personal limits are actually harming themselves, physically and psychologically.

“For decades, professional athletes have been going beyond their limits, and they have to,” explains Valentin Z. Markser of the German Association of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy (DGPPN). The association’s specialized doctors are conducting research within a newly created DGPPN department — sports psychiatry — to find out more about both the benefits of exercise and the relationship between sports and some mental illnesses. The resulting study should shed light on how much physical exertion is healthy and at what point it could pose a threat to mental health.

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Geopolitics

Our 'Emotional' Divide: How The Ukraine War Reveals A World Broken In Two

Russia's invasion has created a stark global divide: them and us. On one side are the countries refusing to condemn Moscow, with the West on the other. It's a dangerous split that could have repercussions far into the future.

Protesters against the war in Ukraine demonstrate in front of the Russian embassy in London

Dominique Moïsi

-Analysis-

PARIS — "The West and the Rest of Us." That's the title of a 1975 essay written by Nigerian essayist and critic Chinweizu Ibekwe. I've been thinking about his words as the war in Ukraine both reveals and accelerates divisions of the world that I believe are ultimately "emotional" in nature.

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With war returning to Europe and the risk of escalation, there is a gap between the Western view and that of the "others," a distinct "us and them." This gap cannot be explained in strictly geographical, political, and economic terms.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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