The strange pronouncement “shame on you!” hints at the oppressive character of shame—a deeply internalized emotion imposed by others. Shame on you. Unlike guilt, shame publicly stigmatizes individuals rather than actions. It assails self-worth, using emotional pain to punish nonconformity. Psychologist Patricia DeYoung describes it as “the enemy of well-being.” There is a barbarism to public humiliation that seems to belong to an age of pillories and dunce caps. But Jon Ronson, in So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, chronicles “a great renaissance of public shaming” in this century. Fueled by angry politics and a brutal online peanut gallery, it has burgeoned as the penalty for many perceived transgressions. Sometimes the justification seems irrefutable: #MeToo throws off the victims’ shame and places it on its proper recipients. When laws don’t This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 19 Going Incognito We all secretly wonder what mischief we’d make if invisible: When our identity is hidden, everything seems possible. Arts & Culture Issue 19 The Best Policy Sometimes we talk to each other without feeling heard. Honesty—a most intimate interaction—can be just as thrilling as its more devious inverse. Arts & Culture Issue 19 A Sense of Suspense With unhinged imaginations and mountains of cliff-hangers, the filmmakers behind the sci-fi podcast Limetown have all the makings of a scary story. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Like Clockwork In this new column about time, we learn how slipping off our watches makes us feel like deadline-damning renegades. Arts & Culture Music Issue 19 On a Grander Scale Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna now may live on the opposite side of the globe, but she’s determined to evolve while staying true to her roots. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Neighborhood: Fire Stations The firefighting profession has evolved over time from Ancient Rome’s rudimentary bucket brigades to today’s sleek life-saving departments.