Bullshit Jobs: A Theory
'Spectacular and terrifyingly true' Owen Jones
'Thought-provoking and funny' The Times
Be honest: if your job didn't exist, would anybody miss it? Have you ever wondered why not? Up to 40% of us secretly believe our jobs probably aren't necessary. In other words: they are bullshit jobs. This book shows why, and what we can do about it.
In the early tw...more
Me, I don't think anyone needs permission, obviously, I think what they were trying to convey was more …moreAsk the publicist! (i.e., I didn't write that).
Me, I don't think anyone needs permission, obviously, I think what they were trying to convey was more "encouragement" - i.e., if you think there's something terribly wrong, well, actually, you're probably right, and a lot of other people think exactly the same thing, you're not alone, maybe we can all get together and do something.(less)
The author was asked by a new journal / magazine if he would write an article that would be a bit controversial and so he wrote one about how so many people today work in bullshit jobs – and then the journal’s website crashed as a million people went about downloading the article.
I was a bit worried when I started this book because I really don’t like shaming people for the work they do. You know, it’s b ...more
The other, hidden, part of bullshit jobs is strong ...more
Economies around the world have, increasingly, become vast engines for producing nonsense.
Reading this was cathartic. Like so many people, I, too, have experienced the suffering that is a useless job—a job that not only lacks any real benefit to society, but which also does not even benefit the company. (Lucky for me, I am now a teacher, which, for all its unpleasant aspects, almost never feels useless.) Even though I got a lot of reading and writing done on the job, the feeling of total fut ...more
We start rating calc at 5 star max.
> Some of the things innovative. Seriously, have my star drives never been built because people around the world have been too busy creating BS PPTs and simply had no time to spend building devices for my space travel? F***!!!!!!! (+1 star)
> Other points felt like BS themselves and made me feel that the author misses the point a bit:
1. If people are ok being with themselves, on their own, with ...more
I like David Graeber. His book "Debt" was phenomenal. The book, however, is far from his best. It expands on the short 2013 essay, "On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs," which is still a provocation worth reading. But it didn't need to be expanded into a book. So the worst part of the book is that it is complete ...more
The astounding number of hours spent weekly by social media users is a direct result of bullshit jobs, says David Graeber, in his book of the same name. In this context, the average smartphone being consulted 221 times a day is no longer unbelievable. Graeber has uncovered a whole new field for research: jobs where nothing real happens.
We often think of neoliberalism as the era when companies are lean and mean, all the fat is excised and operations optimized. ...more
It takes a lot for me at thi ...more
What would happen were this entire class of people to simply disappear? Say what you like about nurses, garbage collectors, or mechanics, it's obvious that were they to vanish in a puff of smoke, the results would be immediate and catastrophic. A world without teachers or dockworkers would soon be in trouble, and even one without science-fiction writers or ska musicians would clearly be a lesser place. (xxi)
You had me at "ska musicians." But our author pivots quickly:
Writing this book also serve...more
I was planning to write a long critique, but I realised that to write an exhaustive review of everything that is wrong with the book I would need to write one of longer length. Instead, I will point out that the book goes off the mark starting with the very definition of a ...more
I'm giving this book five out of five stars because it opens up a new topic and asks strong questions that have not before been considered.
The definition of a bullshit job, in the author's opinion, is "a form of employment that is so completely pointless, u ...more
Engaging a wider audience:
--What I appreciate most with Graeber’s books is his ability to take emancipatory history and theory, and play (there is no better word to describe the action) with ways to present them in accessible, engaging, and meaningful thought-experiments/narratives for a general audience (esp. in rich countries). Another review described the results succinctly as “[making] the strange, familiar, and the familiar, strange.”
--I like to think this is a principle of anarchi ...more
Simply put, this is a rallying cry, and should be treated as such. I really wish there was some more substantive data here, but I prefer to think of Graeber's style as polemical rather than academic, and books like this are what change public opinion, at the end of the day, and I want him to receive an audience.
Not because it's groundbrea ...more
Bullshit Jobs has a great attention-grabbing, provocative title and some occasionally good stories from the interviewees who are all too aware that their various jobs are, well . . . see the title. However, this probably worked much better in its original format as an online article. Author Graeb ...more
Watch the movie if you have a bullshit job!
I'll never forget this moment in 2006. I was working in Japan for a kid's English school. For that day, it was my job to pass out flyers for about two hours after I was done teaching. As I passed out flyers, I stood across from a woman who was wearing a sign made ...more
So I worked hard at faking it and then played hard by partying ...more
I’ll begin with Graeber’s definition of a Bullshit Job. It should be noted that shit jobs and Bullshit Jobs are not the same thing. Here is how ...more
David Graeber is a social anthropologist who published an essay on the topic of such occupations as early as 2013 which caused quite a stir in the form of personal accounts a ...more
On June 15, 2007, Graeber accepted the offer of a lectureship in the anthropology department at Goldsmiths College, University of London, where he currently holds the title of Reader in Social Anthropology.
He was an associate professor of anthropology at Yale University, although Yale controversially declined to rehire him, and his te ...more