Essays on Work and Culture by Hamilton Wright Mabie (1846 - 1916)

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The author investigates the world of work against a backdrop of culture. Each of the 25 essays focuses on one aspect of the topic. For example, the first essay, "Tool or Man?" looks at two views of man. One is that of strength as the provider of security. The other is that of aesthete, as an enthusiast of the arts or academics or religion. In our culture, provider of security is the winner every time. Man as a source of multiple talents cannot be allowed. As the author frames the argument, "Specialisation has been carried so far that it has become an organised tyranny." The author promotes the idea of a world in which we view the total man, not just the provider of security. In succeeding essays the author deals with growth from youth to maturity, the role of education, and man's search for freedom. - Summary by Bill Boerst

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