The Story of Work

A New History of Humankind

Jan Lucassen

View Inside Format: Hardcover
Price: $35.00
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We work because we have to, but also because we like it: from hunter-gathering over 700,000 years ago to the present era of zoom meetings, humans have always worked to make the world around them serve their needs.

Jan Lucassen provides an inclusive history of humanity’s busy labour throughout the ages. Spanning China, India, the Americas and Europe, Lucassen looks at the ways in which humanity organizes work: in the household, the tribe, the city and the state. He examines how labour is split between men, women and children; the watershed moment of the invention of money; the collective action of workers; and at the impact of migration, slavery and the idea of leisure.

From peasant farmers in the first agrarian societies to the precarious existence of today’s gig workers, this surprising account of both cooperation and subordination at work throws essential light on the opportunities we face today.

Jan Lucassen is an honorary fellow at the Institute of International Social History in Amsterdam, where he founded the IISH Research Department. He is the author of numerous books, including Globalising Migration History: The Eurasian Experience and Global Labour History.

ISBN: 9780300256796
Publication Date: August 31, 2021
448 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
16 color + 9 b/w ilus. + 3 figs. + 6 maps