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Work: A Deep History, from the Stone Age to the Age of Robots (Hardcover)

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A revolutionary new history of humankind through the prism of work by leading anthropologist James Suzman

Work defines who we are. It determines our status, and dictates how, where, and with whom we spend most of our time. It mediates our self-worth and molds our values. But are we hard-wired to work as hard as we do? Did our Stone Age ancestors also live to work and work to live? And what might a world where work plays a far less important role look like?

Get Work: A Deep History, from the Stone Age to the Age of Robots (Hardcover) by James Suzman and other general history books online and at Fully Booked bookstore branches in the Philippines.

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A revolutionary new history of humankind through the prism of work by leading anthropologist James Suzman

Work defines who we are. It determines our status, and dictates how, where, and with whom we spend most of our time. It mediates our self-worth and molds our values. But are we hard-wired to work as hard as we do? Did our Stone Age ancestors also live to work and work to live? And what might a world where work plays a far less important role look like?

To answer these questions, James Suzman charts a grand history of “work” from the origins of life on Earth to our ever more automated present, challenging some of our deepest assumptions about who we are. Drawing insights from anthropology, archaeology, evolutionary biology, zoology, physics, and economics, he shows that while we have evolved to find joy meaning and purpose in work, for most of human history our ancestors worked far less and thought very differently about work than we do now. He demonstrates how our contemporary culture of work has its roots in the agricultural revolution ten thousand years ago. Our sense of what it is to be human was transformed by the transition from foraging to food production, and, later, our migration to cities. Since then, our relationships with one another and with our environments, and even our sense of the passage of time, have not been the same.

Arguing that we are in the midst of a similarly transformative point in history, Suzman shows how automation might revolutionize our relationship with work and in doing so usher in a more sustainable and equitable future for our world and ourselves.

More Information
ISBN 9780525561750
Length (cm) 15.0000
Width (cm) 4.0000
Height (cm) 25.0000
Publisher Penguin Press
Publication Date Jan 19, 2021
Pages (number) 464
Genre History, Politics, and Social Sciences
Author James Suzman
Signed No
Format Hardcover
Editorial Reviews

“Ingenious . . . All living organisms expend energy (i.e., work), but humans have transformed this with spectacular creativity that began with stone tools and led to cities, nations, and networks of energy-hungry machines. Anthropologists specialize in describing this process, and Suzman delivers a delightful account of their findings without ignoring the occasions when colleagues missed the boat . . . A fascinating history of humankind as a consumer of energy.” Kirkus (starred)

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