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Useful Work v. Useless Toil (Penguin Great Ideas) Paperback – 7 Aug 2008


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Useful Work v. Useless Toil (Penguin Great Ideas) + Penguin Great Ideas : On Art And Life + Penguin Great Ideas : On the Shortness of Life
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Product details

  • Paperback: 112 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (7 Aug 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141036702
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141036700
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 0.6 x 18.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 118,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

William Morris (1834 - 1896) was one of the most influential thinkers and artists of his time. At Oxford, with the painter Burne-Jones, he fell under the influence of Ruskin and Rossetti. Preoccupied with the poverty of modern design he taught himself at least thirteen crafts and founded his own design firm, Morris & Co. In the late 1870s he became active in political and environmentalist matters and converted to socialism in 1883, helping to found the Socialist League a year later.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By El Stevo on 4 April 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As my title says this book really hits the spot and brings about that feeling you get on Monday mornings. knowing you have to get up and go to work. This book explains what brought about this day to day labouring process that we go through and where it is all heading, and will it indeed make our lives any better or more importantly, those of our grandchildren and the future generations.
The book is split into 3 essays, each focusing on a different area, one on the authors political views, another on the importance of the Arts and another focusing on the way in which we work and what we hope to achieve. Morris points out that past generation sought to work hard to enable to future generations to have an easier life and in the hope that these new generations would have more time for themselves to spend enjoying life, learning, travelling and generally making the most of what the world has to offer. He also points out how we, for some reason continue working (perhaps not so much physically) just as hard as our past generation, in poor conditions with low wages, spending overly long hours doing jobs that mean nothing and are totally unimportant to the world, and of course totally unsatisfactory to do.
This book really had me hooked after just a few memorable lines in the first essay, I enjoyed it thoroughly.
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By Emerald Mermaid on 23 Sep 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Delivered in good order - no problems thank you
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By Kate S on 20 July 2014
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Cracking book, very pleased
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
Absolutely fantastic! 3 Sep 2014
By Patrick E Sheehy - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
A fantastic examination of man's relation to work, why we work, and what we should work towards. A great read for anyone interested in early communism.

The book itself, the binding and design that is, is also gorgeous. Penguin's great books series is a continued example to other publishers of how one should do mass-market paperbacks.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Product advertised as new, arrived creased and torn. 20 Feb 2014
By J. Riley - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This product was advertised as new but arrived with a large crease down the front and a tear running through the front cover.
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