The Pittsfield Public Library will offer a free screening of the documentary “Kindness is Contagious” at 6 p.m. Friday, May 26. The 75-minute film will be followed by a brief discussion.

The film is a feel-good documentary by David Gaz, narrated by Catherine Ryan Hyde, the best-selling author of the novel (and film) “Pay It Forward.”

The documentary began with an article about James Fowler and his research concerning the viral nature of kindness, according to a library news release. Fowler demonstrated that if a person is kind to another person, they will be kind to four other people, and that each of those four people will be kind to four more people, and so on and so on.

With this in mind, the general consensus amongst researchers in this arena is that people are hardwired to cooperate with one another. In short, to be kind. This is one’s fundamental strength as a species and the reason why people are the most successful organism on the planet.

The film profiles cutting-edge scientists and best-selling authors from Berkeley to Harvard and everywhere in between as well as real life people from all walks of life whose lives illustrate their incredible discovery: Nice guys and gals finish first.

For more information, call Lyn Smith at the Pittsfield Public Library at 487-5880.

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