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 26 The History of Bad Advice The diet industry mines the deep seam of emotion that surrounds our eating habits to sell a precision-calibrated hope. 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 47 Alice Sheppard On dance as a channel to commune with the body—even when it hurts. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Dr. Woo Meet the tattoo artist who's inked LA. Arts & Culture Issue 47 Walt Odets The author and clinical psychologist on why self-acceptance is the key to a gay man's well-being. Arts & Culture Fashion Issue 47 A Picture of Health Xiaopeng Yuan photographs the world’s weirdest wellness cures.