Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Speed Limits - Book Review

image credit: Yale Books
Speed Limits by Mark C. Taylor investigates the world's obsession with making things go faster and how we're not always saving time by speeding things up. It examines the many technological innovations - telegraph, electricity, internet - that have seemingly given us a better quality of life and made it easier to produce and communicate while also causing a deterioration in quality of life and hindering personal interaction and communication.

There was a time when workers requested eight hours of work, eight hours of recreation time, and eight hours of rest. but today's work week is no longer divided up like that due to our ability to be constantly connected, constantly available, and constantly getting things done. Leisure time is not valued as much in today's society.

I enjoyed reading about how the Protestant reformation and the invention of the printing press began to transform society, but there is also a lot of talk about business and economics that kind of went over my head. This is not exactly a leisurely read, but more of a thesis and something that could be used as assigned reading in a college class perhaps. So just keep that in mind if you're considering picking up this book.

Speed Limits is published by Yale University Press and will be on store shelves on October 28, 2014. I received a free advance review copy at Book Expo America with no obligation to review.

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