978-0-14-303557-2 / 0143035576

The Mind at Work: Valuing the Intelligence of the American Worker

by Rose, Mike

Publisher:Penguin Books



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About the book:

In the tradition of Barbara Ehrenreichs Nickel and Dimed and Studs Terkels Working, The Mind at Work is an illuminating reassessment of American labor. Testimonials to physical work have always celebrated the dignity, the economic and moral value, even the nobility of blue-collar labor, but rarely the thought required to get the job done right. The lightning-fast organization and mental calculations of the waitress; the complex spatial mathematics of the carpenter; the aesthetic and intellectual dexterity of the hair stylistour failure to acknowledge or respect these qualities has undermined a large portion of Americas working population. In The Mind at Work award-winning writer Mike Rose sets the record straight by taking a long hard look at the intellectual demands of common work.

Integrating personal stories of his own working-class family with interviews, vivid snapshots of people on the job, and current research in social science and cognitive psychology, Rose draws a brilliantly original portrait of America at work. As he probes the countless decisions, computations, and subtle judgments made every day by welders and plumbers, waitresses and electricians, Rose redefines the nature of important work and overturns the "hand/brain" dichotomy that blinds us to the real contributions of working people.

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