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Présentation de l'éditeur

Provocative and enlightening, Richard Sennett's The Craftsman is an exploration of craftsmanship - the desire to do a job well for its own sake - as a template for living. Most of us have to work. But is work just a means to an end? In trying to make a living, have we lost touch with the idea of making things well? Pure competition, Sennett shows, will never produce good work. Instead, the values of the craftsman, whether in a Stradivari violin workshop or a modern laboratory, can enrich our lives and change the way we anchor ourselves in the world around us. The past lives of crafts and craftsmen show us ways of working - using tools, acquiring skills, thinking about materials - which provide rewarding alternative ways for people to utilise their talents. We need to recognize this if motivations are to be understood and lives made as fulfilling as possible. 'Lively, engaging and pertinent ... a lifetime's learning has gone into the writing of this book'
  Roger Scruton, Sunday Times 'An enchanting writer with important things to say'
  Fiona MacCarthy, Guardian 'Enthralling ... Sennett is keen to reconnect thinking with making, to revive the simple pleasure in the everyday object and the useful task. There is something here for all of us'
  Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times 'A masterpiece'
  Boyd Tonkin, Independent Richard Sennett's previous books include The Fall of Public Man, The Corrosion of Character, Flesh and Stone and Respect. He was founder director of the New York Institute for the Humanities, and is now University Professor at New York University and Academic Governor and Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics.

Biographie de l'auteur

Richard Sennett's previous books include The Fall of Public Man, The Corrosion of Character, Flesh and Stone and Respect. He was founder director of the New York Institute for the Humanities, and is now University Professor at New York University and Academic Governor and Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics. He has won the Amalfi and Ebert prizes for sociology and in 2006 was awarded the Hegel Prize by the City of Stuttgart.


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Amazon.com: 27 commentaires
102 internautes sur 106 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Practice What You Preach 21 juin 2008
Par Vince Leo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
You name it--Richard Sennett breaks it down. Metamorphosis provoking material consciousness? (Three ways: internal evolution of a type-form, judgment about mixture and synthesis, domain shift). Mirror tools? (Two types: replicant and robot). Sennett combines this penchant for analytic break-down with a treasure trove of stories, examples, and experiences, drilling into craft through the finger movements of pianists, the methodology of cookbook Instructions, and much, much more. The Craftsman isn't so much a proof of thesis as an exploration of category, the perfect platform for a widely read and experienced scholar to play with a vast and varied data set. Even with all that information, Sennet eventually settles on a something approaching an article of faith: that craft isn't about things but about values, not about superior skill but about doing a job well for its own sake. Think of it as a theory of sustainable labor in the age of hyper-capitalism.

My BIG GRIPE with this book is that if Richard Sennett believes so much in craftsmanship, why are there so many typos? DOZENS OF TYPOS. Misspellings. Extra words. Here's the end of the second to the last sentence in the book: "the denouement of this narrative is often marked by marked by bitterness and regret." Ya think? If this book was a car, the dealer would be forced by law to replace it. I'm sure Sennett had nothing to do with this, and that he is mortified that his faith in the practice of craft (proofreading, book-making) has been so blatantly betrayed by his publisher (Yale University Press, of the billions in endowment fame), but frankly, reading this book was to experience cynicism of the highest order: A terrible fate for a story so indebted to a job well done.
79 internautes sur 85 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
What happened to editors? 30 juillet 2008
Par RDP - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
While I found the contents of Sennett's book interesting and even, at times, uniquely thought-provoking, reading the book left me bewildered and dismayed: How could a book extolling the virtues of quality in craftsmanship be so poorly edited? Is the manner in which the book is published a purposeful counterpoint to Sennett's basic argument? Without exaggeration, almost every page in the book held one or more instances of unaddressed typographical oversight. In truth, the book read like a poor translation from another language possessing idioms and phraseology totally foreign to English. If this is the best that Yale University Press can do, I will certainly question any future purchases bearing that name. For the prospective buyer, be prepared for a disruptive read.
49 internautes sur 52 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A worthwhile read for managers, for HR people, for craftspeople of all stripes. 15 avril 2008
Par D. Stuart - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
Richard Sennett (professor of sociology at New York University and at The London School of Economics) is vitally concerned with the devaluation of human values within the context of the new economy.

We live in an age where management decisions can be very remote, and where people's jobs are displaced wholesale, moved offshore, and where human lives are measured by the bottom-line accounting of large organisations.

What Sennett does is put a stake in the ground by asking rhetorically whether our commitment to work - our craftsmanship - is merely about money, or about something deeper and more human. Of course, the answer is that work commitment - the skill, the care, the late nights, the problem solving and pride that go into our work is a LOT more than about money.

In this book Sennett very clearly and thoughtfully dicusses the vital social currency of craftsmanship (and he uses the term in a modern sense - software programmers are craftspeople too.)

The book is timely, especially in a donwturn economy, and it raises many questions about how we value the people in our society. Craftspeople have been devalued of late - how we celebrate the CEO titans! - but maybe the pendulum needs to swing back the other way.

A worthwhile read for managers, for HR people, for craftspeople of all stripes - and for policy makers and economists. If our society is supposed to be more value-based these days (good corporate citizens, good global citizens) then The Craftsman urges us to look closer to home: at our own good people. Well recommended.

See also:
1 The Corrosion of Character: The Personal Consequences of Work in the New Capitalism
2 Flesh and Stone: The Body and the City in Western Civilization
3 The Fall of Public Man (Open Market Edition)
23 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Salutary Failure 28 octobre 2008
Par DRD - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
This was a very good, very flawed book. Sennet's ideas are extremely interesting but he is an deplorable writer. He rambles and mixes metaphors regularly, uses obscure anglicisms and archaisms and odd syntax with dismaying frequency. George Orwell he is not. He sites Hannah Arendt as one of his influences, and I seem to recall she was not the most readable writer either.

Amusingly, he mentions that a work of handicraft should be rough, handmade looking... and his prose is all that! It seems to have been written on a tape recorder. He thanks his manuscript editor in the foreword, he should have fired her, there are sentences that make no sense at all, misspellings, and double entendres.
Maybe he did some of this on purpose, like modern art, so the reader would have to slow down and parse every sentence, who knows? He's like an prophet, he needs someone to interpret him in a more accessible way.

Anyway, I loved his ideas, and think this was a very meaningful book for me personally.
6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
An Important Re-framing of an Old Idea 10 juin 2010
Par J. V. Lewis - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Richard Sennett has been one of my most-preferred interpreters of physical and social culture since Flesh and Stone. He tackles issues that got trampled by misapplications of lit-crit and semiotic theory over the last few decades, and manages to get them back into the discussion. He has a rather dogged style: history, explication, and journalistic fairness are treated like responsibilities in language that is mostly quite dry, even bland. But what he lacks in vivacity, he more than covers with solid, methodical argumentation and a heartening tendency to broaden concepts and include the truly modern. In this volume, for example, Sennett adds Linux programming to the list of what we normally think of as craft, and I think he makes his case. Craft is a wicked thicket for us Moderns: we have not kept pace with its devaluation in an age of competitive production and disposable workers, and the quality of our handwork has suffered, but Sennett also convinces me that our comprehension of the world and the place of humans in it has suffered, because good craft is the meeting of mind and hand. What devalues handwork impoverishes the human mind. We lose our capacity for imagination.

I read this book very closely, pencil in hand, convinced that Sennett has contributed greatly to our understanding of what it means to be human in a machine age. I believe that his work has eclipsed Hannah Arendt's by now. Excellent.
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