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Bullshit Jobs

A Theory
Durée : 12 h et 39 min
4 out of 5 stars (3 notations)

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Description

From best-selling writer David Graeber, a powerful argument against the rise of meaningless, unfulfilling jobs and their consequences.

Does your job make a meaningful contribution to the world? In the spring of 2013, David Graeber asked this question in a playful, provocative essay titled “On the Phenomenon of Bullshit Jobs”. It went viral. After a million online views in 17 different languages, people all over the world are still debating the answer. 

There are millions of people - HR consultants, communication coordinators, telemarketing researchers, corporate lawyers - whose jobs are useless, and, tragically, they know it. These people are caught in bullshit jobs. Graeber explores one of society’s most vexing and deeply felt concerns, indicting among other villains a particular strain of finance capitalism that betrays ideals shared by thinkers ranging from Keynes to Lincoln. 

Bullshit Jobs gives individuals, corporations, and societies permission to undergo a shift in values, placing creative and caring work at the center of our culture. This book is for everyone who wants to turn their vocation back into an avocation.

©2018 David Graeber (P)2018 Simon & Schuster Audio

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Notations

Global

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Brette
  • 05/09/2018

The book was great but I didn’t like the reader

The reader changed his voice when reading quotes, which would normally be a good thing because it signals to the listener when the quotes begin and end, but he didn’t change his tone, he literally changed his voice. He made his voice higher than his own when quoting women, and strangely, lower than his own when quoting men. The result is that quotes from women were read in a childish voice and sounded simpering, while quotes from men sounded authoritative. The voices were annoying, but the gender bias they introduce is pernicious, and this should not have gone unnoticed by whomever makes the decisions.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 10/04/2019

Not a bullshit book.

This book is in no sense bullshit.

It is composed of detailed accounts from people performing jobs that they percieve as meaningless. Accounts that are explored and analysed by Graeber to a masterful degree. With quantitative data to back up his qualitative exploration David creates a powerful narrative where he estimates that about 50% of all labour in the west is unecessary. An estimate that paints a bleak picture of how our society functions and must produce work wether it is useful or not.

After feeling unhappy at my workplace for quite some time I just managed to put the finger on why. I learned that my job is almost completely bullshit, composed of advanced forms of box ticking and some duct taping. I won't say if this revelation is correlated or causal to reading this book. But I will say that I recommend the read to anyone that reads this review, their relatives and friends.

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  • Jason Huitt
  • 13/03/2019

Required Reading

This book put into words what I have felt for years. David Graeber plumbs the noxious depths of a very insidious part of late-stage capitalism: a job that exists so that you can have a job that exists. It is no hyperbole to say that Graeber offers us up the real dystopia. So let's fight it.

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  • Morgan
  • 22/10/2018

Great perspective on how the world is really run

This was a great listen, although a little tough to hear sometimes, consider I have a full-time bullshit job.

Only criticism is Ragland using accents and changing his pitch when quoting people sourced in the book.

Universal basic income!!!

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  • Andrew Palmer
  • 28/09/2018

Don't be fooled by the "pop" look of the cover

This book goes deeper into its subject than the title or cover would lead you to believe. Graeber starts with examples of people who have bullshit jobs, a working definition of a bullshit job, then builds to a larger structural analysis of the societal forces that caused the proliferation of jobs which are economically wasteful but useful from a perspective of the holders of power. He also takes this analysis to a broader view of theories of value, accessibly presenting the labor theory of value and how it's been seen over the years. He concludes with a possible solution, or at least a stopgap to address the problem. Overall, I found the material very well presented and personally cathartic.

The reader's great too. He very much didn't do a bullshit job.

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  • David B.
  • 29/05/2018

feeling like an ant under a magnifying lens

this book shines an at times uncomfortable light on the bullshittery that comprises most office work today.

the breakdown of BS work into sub-categories makes it easier to separate what is useful from what is, essentially, fluff designed to pad out a bloated work day. My only wish is for some follow-up with meaningful action one can take to reduce the amount of useless activities, or at least reclaim that time for more personally fulfilling endeavors. While a great conversation starter to talk about the greater issues that society faces, individuals need some kind of action plan to help extricate themselves from the honey trap of a BS job.

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  • Jordan Burton
  • 21/12/2018

Incredibly disappointing...

I am at a loss. I can't conceive of how anyone would view this book as a convincing critique of the failures of the labor market. It is the first book I have returned for a refund in many years.

For anyone with a basic understanding of economics, this book is likely to leave you frustrated and confused. Having spent the lion's share of my career helping organizations root out waste and inefficiency, I can say from personal experience that there is a tremendous amount of bullshit to go around. Without question, we undervalue certain roles and overvalue others, and our economic system creates massive inefficiencies and unnecessary work. There are so many interesting, nuanced stories to be told about misaligned incentives and the negative side-effects of market forces. I was eagerly waiting for this book to shed light on what's really going on. Unfortunately, Bullshit Jobs does not tackle the real issues at any depth, nor does it offer anything approaching a compelling analysis of the root causes. Instead, the author is content to wildly over-extrapolate surveys and anecdotes from disgruntled employees to manufacture a simplistic narrative that paints nearly half of the labor pool as fundamentally unnecessary. If this were remotely reflective of reality, my job would be a cake walk.

I looked over the author's bio, and I can only assume that he has never actually worked in a company. Perhaps he has, but I am not sure where and when. That may be forgivable for an academic, but I saw no evidence that he did any real on-site, in-person analysis of actual workplace behavior. His most convincing examples of wasted effort involve edge-cases from public sector employees in Europe, and/or were drawn from emails from individuals who would obviously be predisposed to agree with him. These anecdotes were happily projected across the entire global economy, and positioned as self-evident thereafter.

If you want to understand why our economic system is failing to deliver fulfillment and prosperity among the masses, there are plenty of rigorous, insightful, data-driven books to review from individuals who have real expertise. I would recommend Piketty's book Capital in the Twenty-First Century as a powerful counterpoint to this book. This book is essentially a blog-run-amok--a weak attempt to turn a viral essay into a manifesto without any deep diligence or curiosity.

Let's get curious about what is really going on. Let's dive deep, let's understand the facts. We can do better than this.

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  • Rob
  • 10/03/2019

The best book I've read this year.

Ive spent 3 years at a major international bank as a manager and am currently a Government employee. When I tell you this book is as well researched as it is entertaining, I hope you'll believe me.

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  • YaHya
  • 21/12/2018

The main idea doesn't require a full book

I have a great respect to the points raised by the author. nevertheless it didn't require a full book as the main idea kept coming up again and again. it became boring

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  • H. NELSON
  • 28/08/2018

Very important work

The assumptions of our civilization must become a subject of regular discussion. This book is an important contribution. More discussion about the problem of sociopathy is needed. More discussion about the central question of the role of the commons is needed. Very well spoken book.

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  • Sina
  • 20/07/2018

IT Made me think....

C. Ragland was good as always. What was best about the Book ? It was not the collection of BS Jobs (which was faszinating) , but the end of the book. Imagine a world without all these useless bullshit jobs. the book made me think about it, rather than giving a complete Picture. thanks for the impuls. (please excuse the grammer of my writing, I am not a native) Danke für den Denkanstoß.

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  • UM
  • 08/06/2018

A refreshing study of why we even bother to work

Every bit of the facts rundown in this book is, unfortunately, true. The book is a great read. What I'm not sure about is the idea that the universal basic income would make the world a substantially better place. If we didn’t have to work at all, the 80% of idiots would make the 20% of progress-loving people unbearable. It is to be feared that, once the Basic Universal Income sets in, the percentage of idiocy would surge to 99%, and I only say 99% instead of 100% because I am a notorious optimist. Nonetheless, I recommend everyone to read it and to have a hopefully meaningful discussion.

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  • Marina
  • 31/07/2019

Too long

Interesting topic but it really didn't need to be that long. At some point I felt like I hear so.ikar examples again and again. I lijed the beginning but then I literally waited for the end.

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  • Marek Zajac
  • 24/02/2019

Very interesting book, very important ideas, disappointing reader

I found Graeber’s Bullshit Jobs an inspiring and challenging read. I also feel like I learnt about some key concepts in anthropology and cultural studies.

Sometimes the argumentation lacked rigour with unsatisfying claims made about empirically verifiable hypotheses.

I think he has brought together various ideas in an interesting way that challenges how we can think about work, and I now feel inspired to read further around the problems he identifies.

I found the reader was very weak, placing too strong and inappropriately placed emphases, confusing the meaning for the listener.

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  • Interessierter Kunde Migration/Integration
  • 17/02/2019

Die Story ist schnell erzählt und damit schnell langweilig

Die Story ist eigentlich in wenigen Minuten erzählt, viele Kapitel sind einfach nur noch redundant und langweilen schnell

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