New Philosopher

Bad attitude

Studs Terkel, the great oral historian, begins his definitive book on working life in 1970s America with Mike Lefevre, a 37-year-old labourer in a steel mill near Chicago. Lefevre describes himself as a mule, doing “strictly muscle work”. When a foreman criticises Lefevre’s “bad attitude”, the labourer responds, “my attitude is that I don’t get excited about my job… How are you gonna get excited about pullin’ steel?”

Why is it so hard for Lefevre to find purpose in “pullin’ steel”? Is it because he is doing what economists would call ‘unskilled labour’ – work that has no or very minimal education requirements? Perhaps some work is so repetitive, so

Stai leggendo un'anteprima, registrati per continuare a leggere.

Interessi correlati

Altro da New Philosopher

New Philosopher1 min lettiPsychology
Perception
It wasn’t until I was 12 years old that my parents figured out I was almost as blind as a bat. Like Thomas Nagel, I was unable to imagine what it was like to be a bat, let alone how others could see, so blind I had remained. A world sharply in focus
New Philosopher5 min letti
Staring At The Shadows
It might not be fashionable to say this, but philosophers are in the business of finding the truth. Jesting Pilate, of course, scoffed, “What is truth?”, much to his chagrin. Bertrand Russell defined the philosopher’s quest as the asking of questions
New Philosopher5 min lettiPsychology
Seeing The Good
After reading moral philosophy for a while, you may come to suspect that being a moral philosopher must be utterly exhausting. Not just because reading and writing philosophy is hard work, but because it seems that even in their downtime philosophers