Kate's Reviews > The Rise of the Creative Class: And How It's Transforming Work, Leisure, Community, and Everyday Life

The Rise of the Creative Class by Richard Florida
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really liked it
bookshelves: culture-and-politics, favorites

This a book about economy that does not lament over today's changing values, and does not agonize over a hypothetical future. Instead, Richard Florida seeks to analyze the pieces that make up our present-day system in a fact-based, yet compassionate way. That is reason number one why his work appeals to me.

The second reason is that I strongly identify myself with his construct of the "creative worker", and in this way he includes me as an essential part of the larger system. Although this is the juncture where I would criticize Florida most (he favors describing those in the high-tech sector in most detail, and equates talent in the creative class with education of a bachelor's degree level or higher), he also leaves room for the identity of creative workers to expand and synthesize with previously separate identities:

"For the most part, creative class people persist in defining themselves by their differences: They are engineers or artists, boomers or X-ers, liberals or conservatives, urbanites or suburbanites. Or they only think of number one."

His inclusion of creativity as an element in many different vocations is provocative. It is definitive in the same way that William Whyte (The Organization Man) and Jane Jacobs (The Death and Life of Great American Cities) changed the way we thought about our social structure in the past. At the same time, he doesn't look to monolithic ideas to make the future more rich, but to a wealth of free-thinking, eclectic individuals.

As all theories about class-constructs do, this one has its flaws and misconceptions. I find myself willing to look past those here, as the book generates some important concepts.

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Reading Progress

September 24, 2011 – Shelved
November 19, 2011 – Started Reading
November 19, 2011 – Shelved as: culture-and-politics
December 1, 2011 – Finished Reading
December 5, 2011 – Shelved as: favorites

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