- Paperback: 232 pages
- Publisher: Polity Press; 1 edition (4 Mar. 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0745650023
- ISBN-13: 978-0745650029
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.2 x 21.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 170,906 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
Making is Connecting: The Social Meaning of Creativity, from DIY and Knitting to YouTube and Web 2.0 Paperback – 4 Mar 2011
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"Gauntlett offers a terrific account of how creativity, craft, and community intersect in the 21st century."
Clay Shirky, author of Here Comes Everybody
"Essential reading for media educators. Gauntlett takes us beyond instrumental notions of assessing creative practice or teaching with new media into a more far-reaching and political view of how human beings are finding new ways of making their mark on the world, contributing to culture and 'doing it for ourselves'. In a period where 'experts' are bombarding us with moral panics about 'screen addiction' and 'toxic childhood', usually without any research evidence or attention to the fields of existing literature, Making is Connecting redresses the balance and gives voice to the creative communities, on and offline, too often spoken about from positions of ignorance and suspicion."
Media Education Research Journal
"A very accessible and sound argument centered on creating and sharing as the cornerstones to individual happiness and healthy community in a society saturated with messages imploring and coercing us to do the exact opposite. Academic but accessible, fun with serious supportive argumentation, full of life and exploding with optimism, I'm certain David Gauntlett's Making is Connecting will inspire in you the fire to make, connect, and do!"
"In a beautifully crafted book, [Gauntlett] explains how making things connects us to our world and to each other...Perhaps more academics should be 'craftivists'."
Alison Adam, Salford University
Times Higher Education, "What Are You Reading?"
"Accessible, well constructed, bold and controversial."
Julian McDougall, Newman University College
Times Higher Education, "What Are You Reading?"
"Making is Connecting is an inspired call to recognize the relationship between encouraging creativity and fostering an engaged citizenry. If you want to understand how emerging practices in digital participatory cultures can lead to positive transformations in our individual lives and in our societies, you need to read this book."
Lynn Schofield Clark, University of Denver
"Making is Connecting is a remarkably clear, convincing and engaging work. Perhaps the best thing about this book is the way in which Gauntlett draws together the existing literature in this field of creativity and community (particularly online). The book makes sense of Leadbeater, Anderson, Lanier, Shirky and others and shines a light on their strengths and weaknesses in a lucid and convincing fashion."
Andrew Dubber, Birmingham City University
From the Back Cover
In Making is Connecting, David Gauntlett argues that, through making things, people engage with the world and create connections with each other. Both online and offline, we see that people want to make their mark on the world, and to make connections.
During the previous century, the production of culture became dominated by professional elite producers. But today, a vast array of people are making and sharing their own ideas, videos and other creative material online, as well as engaging in real–world crafts, art projects and hands–on experiences.
Gauntlett argues that we are seeing a shift from a sit–back–and–be–told culture′ to a making–and–doing culture′. People are rejecting traditional teaching and television, and making their own learning and entertainment instead. Drawing on evidence from psychology, politics, philosophy and economics, he shows how this shift is necessary and essential for the happiness and survival of modern societies.
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Top Customer Reviews
The compass of this book is vast, so I homed in on something I know, namely, "knitting", intrigued that this even has a mention, however, its inclusion is clarified by a quote from Joanne Turney in her book, "The Culture of Knitting".
Joanne says that knitting "offers a means of creativity, of confidence in one's own ability to "do", as well as occupying a space in which one can just "be".
This is amplified by the comment on the back of the book, that, "Gauntlett offers a terrific account of how creativity, craft and community intersect in the 21st Century" - [Clay Shirky, author of "Here Comes Everybody"].
Not surprisingly, in the sweep of David Gauntlett's vision of present trends, a parallel is drawn to William Morris and the Arts and Crafts movement. He demonstrates how the contemporary interest in DIY and the "handmade", can be viewed as a resurgence of the arts and crafts ethos in this present century.
As already a part of the "make do and mend" generation - my mother was born 1903, and I was born just after the WWII - I don't know how much I am part of this revolution of independence from reliance on the world of consumerism - but I do know I am in sympathy with it.
Fashioning Technology: A DIY Intro to Smart Crafting (Craft: Projects)William Morris: A Life for Our Time
In fact it begins before DIY (but after knitting) with insights about "craft" from Victorian thinkers John Ruskin and William Morris. They were critics of the new industrialization and what it did to the world of making, of manufacture. And more specifically, what it did to those workers caught up in the industrial process which denied any individual creativity to the worker who was there to aid the machines in making predesigned product.
The author extends this discussion to emphasize the importance and value of "making" in everyday life, and how new technologies are taking the making and distribution of creative work out of the hands solely of professionals. And the various ways in which this is a good thing.
Throughout the discussion Gauntlett leads the reader through some very stimulating and critical arguments, ideas and research from a wide range of sources including his own. The discussion is always balanced, weighing counter-arguments throughout. It is very clearly presented, with plenty of signposting to help the reader follow the argument making this an easy and involving read.
I now feel like I've had a bit of a crash-course in cutting-edge Media and Communications Studies. Has made me think about my life in a different way.
Highly recommended, even to www skeptics!
That being said, the book is a delight to read. David Gauntlett's style is highly accessible, yet very thorough. Each new concept is defined carefully, everyday examples are given, and plenty of opportunity is given for extra research. It should be included in every booklist for students of communications, media studies, sociology, general studies, and modern politics. Teachers will also be delighted to use it as a 'dip-in' resource book. If this isn't enough, more information is actually provided on a web site.
I finished the book wanting to sign-up for David Gauntlett's courses. My only quibble is that his argument would have been better served if he had used Twitter rather than Facebook as an example of an online interactive service. Maybe next time...
I think some of his arguments are a trifle simplistic and I could argue with them: however he is trying to make a point about the development of creativity amongst everyday individuals which will bring about happiness.
He lists Layard's seven factors of happiness. I have some issue with these as the first five (Family relationships, financial situation and so on) are all inter-related and depend partly on the environment and genetic nature we start with. I would even argue that the last two personal freedom and personal values are strongly influenced by all the others. I would want a more critical appraisal of such ideas which seem to be accepted without a great deal of comment. This is particularly so as they seem to form a major plank in his ideas about what constitutes happiness.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I like the positive attitude to society developments. Very refreshing. Emphasises the satisfaction of creativity. Read morePublished on 3 Aug. 2013 by Keller
Great book - read it from cover to cover. For anyone who rejects art for arts sake, or who wants a refreshing approach to making and creativity, this is a mustPublished on 17 Jun. 2013 by Jinny Mckie
Bought this to use in my dissertation but it is also a really good book as well. Very interesting book absolutely enjoyed reading it!Published on 29 Feb. 2012 by Lucy Jennings
Despite being interested in the topic, I found this book difficult to plough through and I confess I didn't make it to the end. Only for those with stamina.Published on 23 Feb. 2012 by Kev Partner
This book made the connection for me between my politics and my interest in craft and making things. Read morePublished on 10 Dec. 2011 by Jess
I just love this book. It is a wake up call that just seems to resonate and ring true for me just at the moment. Read morePublished on 8 Dec. 2011 by Amazon Customer
I teach design students who are driven to make, but not so driven to connect. When I attempt to get them to consider the role of craft within society as a form of developing social... Read morePublished on 26 Oct. 2011 by J. Baldwin
This is a really worthwhile overview of whats happening in the online/interactive world of craftmaking today. Read morePublished on 13 Sept. 2011 by Trisha