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    Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work (Hardback) By (author) Matthew B Crawford

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    DescriptionA philosopher / mechanic destroys the pretensions of the high- prestige workplace and makes an irresistible case for working with one's hands "Shop Class as Soulcraft" brings alive an experience that was once quite common, but now seems to be receding from society-the experience of making and fixing things with our hands. Those of us who sit in an office often feel a lack of connection to the material world, a sense of loss, and find it difficult to say exactly what we do all day. For anyone who felt hustled off to college, then to the cubicle, against their own inclinations and natural bents, "Shop Class as Soulcraft" seeks to restore the honor of the manual trades as a life worth choosing. On both economic and psychological grounds, Crawford questions the educational imperative of turning everyone into a "knowledge worker," based on a misguided separation of thinking from doing, the work of the hand from that of the mind. Crawford shows us how such a partition, which began a century ago with the assembly line, degrades work for those on both sides of the divide. But Crawford offers good news as well: the manual trades are very different from the assembly line, and from dumbed-down white collar work as well. They require careful thinking and are punctuated by moments of genuine pleasure. Based on his own experience as an electrician and mechanic, Crawford makes a case for the intrinsic satisfactions and cognitive challenges of manual work. The work of builders and mechanics is secure; it cannot be outsourced, and it cannot be made obsolete. Such work ties us to the local communities in which we live, and instills the pride that comes from doing work that is genuinely useful. A wholly original debut, "Shop Class as Soulcraft" offers a passionate call for self-reliance and a moving reflection on how we can live concretely in an ever more abstract world.


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  • Full bibliographic data for Shop Class as Soulcraft

    Title
    Shop Class as Soulcraft
    Subtitle
    An Inquiry Into the Value of Work
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Matthew B Crawford
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 246
    Width: 142 mm
    Height: 211 mm
    Thickness: 25 mm
    Weight: 386 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9781594202230
    ISBN 10: 1594202230
    Classifications

    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 17820
    B&T Merchandise Category: GEN
    B&T Book Type: NF
    BIC E4L: ECO
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S4.5
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    BIC subject category V2: KCF
    LC subject heading:
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 05
    B&T General Subject: 750
    LC subject heading:
    Ingram Subject Code: BE
    Libri: I-BE
    BISAC V2.8: SOC026000
    DC21: 331
    LC subject heading:
    Abridged Dewey: 331
    B&T Approval Code: A31640000
    BISAC V2.8: BUS038000
    B&T Approval Code: A46454800
    DC22: 331
    LC subject heading:
    LC classification: HD4824 .C72 2009
    Edition
    1
    Illustrations note
    black & white illustrations
    Publisher
    Penguin Press
    Imprint name
    Penguin Press
    Publication date
    28 May 2009
    Publication City/Country
    New York, NY
    Author Information
    Matthew B. Crawford is a philosopher and mechanic. He has a Ph.D. in political philosophy from the University of Chicago and served as a postdoctoral fellow on its Committee on Social Thought. Currently a fellow at the University of Virginia's Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, he owns and operates Shockoe Moto, an independent motorcycle repair shop in Richmond, Virginia.
    Review quote
    "It's appropriate that ["Shop Class as Soulcraft"] arrives in May, the month when college seniors commence real life. Skip Dr. Seuss, or a tie from Vineyard Vines, and give them a copy for graduation.... It's not an insult to say that "Shop Class" is the best self-help book that I've ever read. Almost all works in the genre skip the "self" part and jump straight to the "help." Crawford rightly asks whether today's cubicle dweller even has a respectable self....It's kind of like Heidegger and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance." -"Slate" "Matt Crawford's remarkable book on the morality and metaphysics of the repairman looks into the reality of practical activity. It is a superb combination of testimony and reflection, and you can't put it down." -Harvey Mansfield, Professor of Government, Harvard University "Every once in a great while, a book will come along that's brilliant and true and perfect for its time. Matthew B. Crawford's "Shop Class as Soulcraft" is that kind of book, a prophetic and searching examination of what we've lost by ceasing to work with our hands-and how we can get it back. During this time of cultural anxiety and reckoning, when the conventional wisdom that has long driven our wealthy, sophisticated culture is foundering amid an economic and spiritual tempest, Crawford's liberating volume appears like a lifeboat on the horizon." -Rod Dreher, author of "Crunchy Cons: The New Conservative Counterculture and Its Return to Roots" "This is a deep exploration of craftsmanship by someone with real, hands-on knowledge. The book is also quirky, surprising, and sometimes quite moving." -Richard Sennett, author of "The Craftsman" "Matt Crawford has written a brave and indispensable book. By making a powerful case for the enduring value of the manual trades, "Shop Class as Soulcraft" offers a bracing alternative to the techno-babble that passes for conventional wisdom, and points the way to a profoundly necessaryW