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Good Work [Paperback]

E. F. Schumacher , Peter N. Gillingham
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Harpercollins; Reprint edition (April 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060905611
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060905613
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 13.2 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,499,784 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Indicates directions individuals can take to make a workable future for themselves, stressing that man can control and redirect technology and large institutions by recognizing the importance of the human being. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still worth reading 8 Nov 2003
Dr. Schumacher, author of "Small is Beautiful" and "A Guide for the Perplexed", was one of the wise men of the last fifty years. In this collection of six talks given in America during the mid-1970s one of his themes is that the purpose of work is threefold: to produce necessary and useful goods and services; to enable us to use and perfect our gifts and skills; and to collaborate with other people so as to liberate ourselves from our inborn egocentricity. A job in which there is no personal satisfaction destroys the soul. He maintained that we need a new worldview - a new paradigm - and his 1962 report for the government of India proposed using small, simple tools and equipment with low capital cost and low impact on the environment was the start of the new paradigm. Considering the centrality of work in human life, the choice of technology is critical. Poor countries need intermediate technologies to ensure that the rural masses can work themselves out of poverty and thus raise their standard of living.
While Chief Economist at the National Coal Board, Schumacher devoted time to three projects which became his great passion. The first was the Soil Association to develop organic farming. The second was the Scott Bader company which had no owners or employees - only co-owners and co-employees. The third was his new paradigm - intermediate technology. In one of his essays the author provides helpful insights: "The third organization I am concerned with is one that I started with a handful of friends in 1965: the Intermediate Technology Development Group. Now you have the company, charity status, no money, maybe somebody has let you share an office, but what do you want to do? You want to create and systematize this intermediate technology, but how do you set about doing this?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ideas galore 8 Jan 2012
By ow
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
a great book full of such profound common sense. essays entitled
the end of an era
towards a human scale technology
a viable future visable in the present
on appropriate forms of ownership and action
education for good work
the party's over

already read it twice most of it underlined.making changes in my life.
also worth looking at william morris useful work verses useless toil
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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Schumacher's Writing is Fantastic, Gillingham's Inappropriately Included 11 July 2005
By RichardC - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Schumacher's writings in 'Good Work' clarified for me more than ever the important things in human life and society, what we need to do to sustain meaningful lives, as well putting on paper many things I had "already thought", as is so often the case with real truths and which he put into plain meaningful text thus really crystallizing them. The first 6 Chapters / 145 pages of the book are Schumacher's and are timelessly brilliant.

The 7th long chapter (71 pages) was written by Peter Gillingham. While Gillingham's writing may be fine in a stand-alone book covering his own ideas, I felt it to have been inappropriately "tacked on" to Schumacher's priceless work. By doing so I it feel watered down or diverted the reader away from Schumacher's genius, with the book drifting off into other domains.

This book "Good Work" is 100% worth getting and reading, and is especially relevant to life today (2005) . Although written 30 years ago, it was way ahead of its time, and the points it makes about society, its obsessive addiction to oil and unnatural systems of living are very relevant to what's happening today - in effect, the chickens it writes about in the mid-1970's are now coming home to roost.
5.0 out of 5 stars I'll be using this book in my graduate level course on Good Work, Meaningful Work 4 July 2014
By Kerul Kassel - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Schumacher's essays on work, technology, business culture, and related issues. Very insightful and applicable even almost 40 years later. I'll be using this book in my graduate level course on Good Work, Meaningful Work.
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