Shop Class As SoulCraft. By Matthew Crawford
What an interesting book from a PhD’s point of view on how our society has lost its touch with the trades / crafts people.
It’s a bit like Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance partly because the author holds PhD in Philosophy I’m sure.
This has always been one of my soapbox speeches anyway, so I did enjoy this book. The message in our society is “go to college” and it is told in many ways throughout our lives, in schools, on T.V., in magazines, and on that thing called the Internet. We are loosing some very talented crafts people who will go on to unhappy lives working at a desk when they would have LOVED working with their hands and figuring out complex problems using machinery. Some of the brightest young men I ever met were at a high school vocational technical center after I left Colby College a private liberal arts college. One young man in particular was so gifted in the machine tool program that even his instructor who had been a machinist for years was blown away.
One argument the author makes is that you can off shore an architect but you can’t a builder. So lets reinvest in people who can provide quality services in the trades areas. Another great statement that stuck with me is that “problem SOLVING” can be done by a computer but “problem FINDING” can only be done by a human with an intellect and ability to create.
You can read an essay written by the author which was the inspiration to the book here.