Sweet little vintage book that describes the process and philosophy of the Japanese Tea Ceremony with charming straightforwardness. Gently disparagingSweet little vintage book that describes the process and philosophy of the Japanese Tea Ceremony with charming straightforwardness. Gently disparaging of what's characterized as a wasteful, ostentatious, flamboyant "occidental" way of life in contrast to the principles of wa-kei-sei-jaku, or harmony, respect, purity and tranquility. Beautiful, simple brush drawings scattered throughout....more
Wow. Marjorie Kelly bowled me over. So much wisdom packed into such an enjoyable book.
Based on dozens of describes the reality of our current "extractWow. Marjorie Kelly bowled me over. So much wisdom packed into such an enjoyable book.
Based on dozens of describes the reality of our current "extractive" economy and presents the opportunity to transition to a "generative" economy. Specifically, according to Kelly, "ownership is the gravitational field that holds our economy in its orbit, locking us all into behaviors that lead to financial excess and ecological overshoot." A new model of "generative ownership" on the other hand, can be the foundation for an economy that values life over the accumulation of capital.
I'm butchering the clarity of Kelly's writing with my long-winded description -- better really to just read the book yourself :)
This dude is a personal role model. Particularly enjoyed the brief history of the nonprofit sector -- gave a lot of insight into how and why the fieldThis dude is a personal role model. Particularly enjoyed the brief history of the nonprofit sector -- gave a lot of insight into how and why the field has evolved in the way that it has and sets the stage well for 'something different.' I also like how Eggers doesn't assume that purely market-based change is the solution to complex, structural problems like hunger. ...more
Urban economist Edward Glaeser writes an accessible, well-researched, thought-provoking piece on the benefits of good urban spaces (as contrasted withUrban economist Edward Glaeser writes an accessible, well-researched, thought-provoking piece on the benefits of good urban spaces (as contrasted with rural areas and suburban sprawl), and what it takes to create them. The book doesn't coalesce on a central theme, but examines the modern city from a variety of angles: how investment in people and education is critical to a city's success; how industrialization and assembly-line thinking stifle the "intellectual fertility" and "radical experimentation" that make for great cities; how "antiurban" public policy, building codes, and NIMBYish drive up housing prices in successful cities and encourage sprawl elsewhere.
Glaeser is consistent in his view that successful urban places are created by focusing on people rather than infrastructure. Part of the magic of urban areas is the concentration and constant exchange of people and their ideas. A municipal government's resonsibility is to invest in building human capital and very basic services (safety, schools, public transit) that allow people and their ideas to connect and flourish. "Ultimately, the job of urban government isn't to fund buildings or rail lines that can't possibly cover their costs, but to care for the city's citizens" (p.9). In the same vein, he advocates for public policy that focuses on supporting "poor people, not poor places." "Infrastruture eventually becomes obsolete, but education perpetuates itself as one smart generation teaches the next" (p. 27).
One major criticism of Glaeser's work is its extreme anti-rural tendencies. While Glaeser gives a balanced critique of suburban living and the reasons for, and consequences of sprawl, every mention of rural living and livelihoods seems unequivocally dismissive. His critiques makes sense as a response to the over-rontanticization of rural livelihoods and villainization of cities which some characterize as a cause (rather than magnet) for poverty; however, Glaeser overcompensates in the opposite direction, and cannot seem to imagine why anyone might choose a productive, sustainable rural livelihood over exciting, diverse, vibrant urban areas. One wonders where he expects all these urban-dwellers to get their food from. ...more