The World Beyond Your Head

Reviews in The New Yorker, The Guardian, The National Review (interview) of Matthew Crawford’s The World Beyond Your Head.  

True freedom requires that “the actor is in touch with the world and other people, in comparison to which the autistic pseudo-autonomy of manufactured experiences is revealed as a pale substitute.” — KIRKUS

These points can all be left to the side, however, for what I consider important about Crawford is his presentation of a truly alternative ideology, a reaction to the deadness of our times, that is not often offered in a thoughtful way. It is rare today to find a traditionalist who is not a conservative, and also a humanist who is not a liberal. He can criticize libertarians for failing to recognize by whom we are really ruled (large private bureaucracies can be as bad as their public counterparts), and liberals for lacking any vision of human thriving more meaningful than mutual respect and Muzak. Crawford is offering something that the Greek ethicists once aimed for: insight into what it means to live a satisfying life that is both philosophically grounded and gleaned through experience. — Tim Wu in The New Yorker