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Handwerk by Richard Sennett

Handwerk (edition 2008)

by Richard Sennett, Michael Bischoff (Übersetzer)

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5551417,987 (3.52)8
Authors:Richard Sennett
Other authors:Michael Bischoff (Übersetzer)
Info:Berlin Verlag (2008), Edition: 1, Gebundene Ausgabe, 432 pages
Collections:Your library, Nicht mehr in meinem Besitz
Tags:Handwerk, Kultur, Sachbuch, Arbeitswelt, Arbeit

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The Craftsman by Richard Sennett



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» See also 8 mentions

English (13)  German (1)  All (14)
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shelved at: (Z) : Reference
  PeterKent2015 | Feb 14, 2016 |
I thought I would like this but no, I found it slightly annoying and I'm not quite sure why. While Mr Sennett has played music and cooks he doesn't really get craftwork. It was possibly on page 58 when he mentioned a chef d'oeuvre eleve which is known in English speaking countries as a Masterpiece, or sometimes Master Piece. There is no reason to use the French term, when there is a used serviceable term, one known by craftsmen and I would know, my dad is a master cabinetmaker and carpenter and my brother a master carpenter and I have a cousin a master glass worker. To add to my crafty roots my mother is a domestic science teacher and I am an accomplished knitter, embroiderer and dabbler in other crafts. He doesn't get the beauty of the mundane, the mind-restfulness of the garter stitch scarf, probably worked simultaneously with a complex piece of lace; or the accomplishment of a simple facecloth while the piece you've been working on is seemingly at an impasse, and crafty sorts do this all the time, while amazing pieces with detail and ornamentation are immensely satisfying and sing, there is also something about watching the simple task of knitting each stitch, intensely. He glorifies the innovative and the work of hands but seems to miss the fact that the plodding workers are what allowed that artist the luxury of time to do their work.

Interesting but I think he misses some points. ( )
  wyvernfriend | Feb 11, 2016 |
shelved at: (Z) : Reference
  mwbooks | Jan 22, 2016 |
Heard about this book on the To the Best of Our Knowledge show called Reconsidering Craft, 12/14/2008: http://www.wpr.org/book/081214a.cfm.
  jlapac | Aug 14, 2013 |
I was really looking forward to reading this, a good book about the act of making things and learning skills is long overdue. There were some very interesting facts and ideas in this book, but it was really hard work finding them because the writing is muddled. Sennett skips around the topic too much, exploring too many ideas without explaining them clearly.

The whole book needs a severe edit. I persevered to the end, but didn't enjoy it. ( )
  lettice | Mar 24, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0300151195, Paperback)

Defining craftsmanship far more broadly than “skilled manual labor,” Richard Sennett maintains that the computer programmer, the doctor, the artist, and even the parent and citizen engage in a craftsman’s work. Craftsmanship names the basic human impulse to do a job well for its own sake, says the author, and good craftsmanship involves developing skills and focusing on the work rather than ourselves. In this thought-provoking book, one of our most distinguished public intellectuals explores the work of craftsmen past and present, identifies deep connections between material consciousness and ethical values, and challenges received ideas about what constitutes good work in today’s world.


The Craftsman engages the many dimensions of skill—from the technical demands to the obsessive energy required to do good work. Craftsmanship leads Sennett across time and space, from ancient Roman brickmakers to Renaissance goldsmiths to the printing presses of Enlightenment Paris and the factories of industrial London; in the modern world he explores what experiences of good work are shared by computer programmers, nurses and doctors, musicians, glassblowers, and cooks. Unique in the scope of his thinking, Sennett expands previous notions of crafts and craftsmen and apprises us of the surprising extent to which we can learn about ourselves through the labor of making physical things.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:18 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Taking in everything from Pandora and Hephaestus to Linux programmers, Sennett posits that the spirit of craftsmanship-an "enduring, basic human impulse, the desire to do a job well for its own sake"-is tragically lacking in many areas of the industrialized world. Craftsmanship, by combining skill, commitment and judgment, establishes a close relationship between head and hand, man and machine, that Sennett asserts is vital to physical, mental and societal well-being; the symptoms of craftsmanship-deficiency can be found in worker demoralization, inefficiency and waning loyalty from both employees and employers, as well as other (largely institutional) effects. Sennett looks at the evolution of craftsmanship and the historical forces which have stultified it, how it's learned in the areas it still thrives (among scientists, artists, cooks, computer programmers and others), and issues of quality and ability (skill, not talent, makes a craftsman).--From Publisher's Weekly.… (more)

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