The World Beyond your Head
On Becoming An Individual in An Age of DistractionBook - 2015
Matthew Crawford is the author of Shop Class as Soulcraft , which challenged our notions about what we do and how it affects our sense of self (and our happiness). This new book addresses the crisis of attention: where we focus -- or cannot focus--equally affects our sense of self. As our mental lives become more fragmented, what is at stake often seems to be nothing less than the question of whether one can maintain a coherent self . The key to a better life then is to get command not just of one's physical environment, but of one's mental life, too.
Like Shop Class as Soulcraft , Crawford uses case studies as well as entertaining musings from his own personal observations to describe the fundamental shift surrounding attention that is happening in our culture. From making a surfboard, to parenting, to anxiously navigating the inside of an airport--all provide clues to a phenomenon that we increasingly experience, but could not put into words, until now. An accessible and food for thought kind of look at what our difficulties with attention mean for us as free thinking people.
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P. 76 Whether you regard it as infantile or as the highest achievement of the European mind, what we find in Kant are the philosophical roots of our modern identification of freedom with choice, where choice is understood as a pure flashing forth of the unconditional will. This is important for understanding our culture because thus understood, choice serves as the central totem of consumer capitalism, and those who present choices to us appear as handmaidens to our own freedom.
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