Praise. “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. Philosopher and motorcycle repair-shop owner Crawford extols the value of making and fixing things in this masterful paean to what he calls. “Shop Class as Soulcraft” is a beautiful little book about human Matthew B. Crawford, who owns and operates a motorcycle repair shop in.

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Matthew Crawford does a stellar job of explaining the host of good reasons for the societal discrepancy between the usefulness of various jobs and their relative prestige, and makes a case that certain types of skilled manual labor are more intellectually and physically rewarding than jobs in “knowledge work. He also runs a very small business in Richmond, Virginia. But he never did, and I still can’t figure calss why.

I have come to appreciate the wisdom of my Dad’s’ unrelenting insistence that I learned how to work with my hands. He it was who hewed out that resemblance from quite dissimilar blocks, for no two felloe-blocks were ever alike.

At a time when more schools were closing down shop programs this TV show which crawflrd tinkering with tools was a big hit.

Based on his own experience as soulcrqft electrician and mechanic, Crawford makes a case for the intrinsic satisfactions and cognitive challenges of manual work. But he is also more autonomous.

I read an excerpt and really enjoyed it. Evidently, the new system provoked natural revulsion. Romantic inklings aside, here’s hoping I don’t end up living under a bridge any time soon.

Instead I got a lot of shop talk, descriptions of fixing motorcycles and philosophizing about certain soilcraft the author made with regard to his own trajectory through life. Boasting is what a boy does, who has no real effect in the world.

Shop Class as Soulcraft — Matthew B. Crawford

Add to Cart Add to Cart. But briefly, he just comes across as naive and ignorant about anyone else’s experience besides his own.

However, I think that kind of satisfaction can be found in professional work as well. With each word of this book, I want to jump up and yell, “Huzzah! I take their point to be that the crafting problem is in fact not reducible to an algorithmic problem. Using his own experience as an electrician and mechanic, Soulccraft presents a wonderfully articulated call for self-reliance and a moving reflection on how we can live concretely in an ever more abstract world.


Shop Class as Soulcraft

It was developed by mechanics who observed the relations between volume, pressure, and temperature. Stay in Touch Sign up. While I am proud and happy that I have a B. This same obfuscation irritates me in products as dissimilar as newer dumbed-down versions of Windows, and newer shampoo bottles where you can’t even remove the cap, in case you wanted to rinse it out for recycling. Crswford writes like someone who could have been a product of the Committee on Social Thought.

The main hypothesis is that thinking and doing are inseparable from each other. It was just SO painfully egg-heady, cerebral, and plain I’m-so-fricking-holier-than-thou that I feel like the ssoulcraft was just sucked right out of the book. T he degradation of work in the last century is often tied to the evils of technology in one way or another. While this is a rare combination, I know several carpenters who are conversant with Kierkegaard and Heidegger. My most reliable source, Fred Cousins in Chicago, had such an encyclopedic knowledge of obscure European motorcycles that all I could offer him in exchange was regular shipments of obscure European beer.

I suppose one could say that this book was impactful considering I now want to quit my job and fix airplanes or something.

In a temporary suspension of the Taylorist logic, Ford was forced to double the daily wage of his workers to keep the line staffed. View all 9 comments.

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I would recommend reading them in-line with the main text. White collar professions, too, are dlass to routinization and degradation, proceeding by the same process as befell manual fabrication a hundred years ago: Jul 05, Margaret rated it liked it Shelves: On the other hand, there is much fretting woulcraft what will happen once the many of us have “idle hands.

In doing so, he offers nothing less than an explanation of why we are getting more stupid with every passing year — which is to say, the degradation of work is ultimately a cognitive matter. I was sometimes quieted at the sight of a gang of conduit entering a large panel in a commercial setting, bent into nestled, flowing curves, with varying offsets, that somehow all terminated in the same plane. But there is wide scope still for non-routinized manual work, and the young should be encouraged to clwss those alternatives.


The result, he argues, is that children will be “more well adjusted to emerging patterns of work and consumption,” where predetermined rules and outcomes take precedence over independent struggle and action. Maybe another electrician will see it someday. This history provides a nice illustration of a point made by Aristotle:. Braverman was an avowed Marxist, writing in As Sennett argues, most people take pride in being good at something specific, which happens through the accumulation of experience.

To this end, perhaps we need to consider the origins of shop class, so that we can better understand its demise.

Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. The need for such socialization was not simply a matter of assimilating immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe who lacked a Protestant work ethic. I’d buy it again and I know I’ll read it again.

There were definitely some good points made but nothing that wasn’t common sense to me. My husband, a former high school shop teacher, was captivated from the first page — bemoaning the disappearance of shop classes from our common education — a interrupting my reading of another book to share a paragraph of this book.

While I am not mechanically inclined, he gives other examples that are exactly the kind of thing that I find worthwhile: But, that leaves little room for real innovation, which is what the book gets at.

While Crawford doesn’t offer much of a prescription for this problem, his diagnosis will, at the very least, make you consider your own situation and think about changing it.