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Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
17
Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work
Format: Hardcover|Change
Price:$24.94+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on January 27, 2017
Interesting point of view on our modern society.
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on May 2, 2015
Loved it. Helps me appreciate the manual things that need to be done in our lives.
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on October 2, 2017
as advertised
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on March 22, 2016
must read the world is in big trouble
but we can fix it with a new mindset
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on January 17, 2016
Worth reading, whether you work in the trades, or not.
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on January 14, 2015
Excellent
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on April 12, 2015
Such a great book - I'm recommending it to everyone I know!
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on November 18, 2016
This book came recommended to me by an auditor, a retired pilot, who was spending a couple of days looking over my safety systems. He had a 45 year career flying and relying on people to do their job so he could do his, and come home alive. His passion and excitement for this book was quite exhilarating, and I was prepared to be impressed. This book is an easy read, and yet requires you re read it. I felt concordance with much that was written, but more importantly was challenged to re think my own position and step back, assess how I view my approach to work and to craft, several of which I practice, both digitally and in analogue. The highest praise I can give a book is that I bought copies for people I feel could benefit from it. My teenage son has not been able to crack this book yet, but perhaps this is a work for people many years along in practicing their craft. The only reason I didn't give it five stars is because is wasn't quite as finished as it should be, but I felt the writers exhaustion and perhaps the slightly unsteady hand of an editor.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERon August 4, 2010
In the great rush to improve our present lifestyle and secure our occupational futures, we, the workers of the world, have inadvertently trashed our appreciation for the real meaning of work. Crawford, in "Shop Class as Soulcraft", describes what many of us have lost in terms of becoming mere cogs in the industrial wheel that threatens to grind us into absolute submission because we no longer control the things we produce. This book takes both a cerebral and light-hearted approach in defining what truly constitutes an ideal workplace where the worker is an individual who enters into the joy of producing something that he or she can take personal pride in. While part of this book deals with the philosophy and psychology of why we have become industrial drones controlled by other people's wishes, Crawford offers his readers a ray of hope in the story he shares about his own decision to change. For him, an academic trained to be a 'cubical' professional, his secret passion had always been working on old motorcycles and cars. Returning to this later in his life, he discovered that there was virtue in working with one's hands. Manual labor involves an intellectual and mechanical sophistication that connects the mind with the body to create or preserve something that usually outlives and outperforms anything modern technology can build. Crawford's personal reflections are helpful in defining the need in all of us to come to grips with our identity in the workforce. To make that critical change is not easy. It will require a mindset that is given to appreciating detail, working under extended timelines, and willing to experiment with different options. The inevitable job satisfaction comes with knowing that you can work for yourself while having the ability to fix other people's problems. Crawford writes with a conviction that anyone can discover this purpose if they are willing to turn their backs on the artificial constraints of the conventional job: a slavish responsibility to the company; a continual redefining of the job; and a need to compete with fellow workers to maintain one's place.
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on July 12, 2009
Shop Class as Soul Craft is a very enjoyable book. It is a well researched, somewhat academic review of the relationship between people and their work and how people find value in work. The book isn't very long at about 200 pages, but is not a very quick read as some of the concepts are fairly involved. I would recommend to any young person starting out in the work force that they read the author's views on the transportablity of work. For people, like myself, nearing retirement age, it brought back pleasant memories of times when I felt that my work made a difference. I think his view of office work is a bit jaundiced, but none the less, he makes some very valid points, made more valid perhaps in the wake of Enron and other corporate deceptions.
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