Together by Richard Sennett
The Rituals, Pleasures and Politics of Cooperation

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Synopsis

Living with people who differ—racially, ethnically, religiously, or economically—is the most urgent challenge facing civil society today. We tend socially to avoid engaging with people unlike ourselves, and modern politics encourages the politics of the tribe rather than of the city. In this thought-provoking book, Richard Sennett discusses why this has happened and what might be done about it.

Sennett contends that cooperation is a craft, and the foundations for skillful cooperation lie in learning to listen well and discuss rather than debate. In Together he explores how people can cooperate online, on street corners, in schools, at work, and in local politics. He traces the evolution of cooperative rituals from medieval times to today, and in situations as diverse as slave communities, socialist groups in Paris, and workers on Wall Street. Divided into three parts, the book addresses the nature of cooperation, why it has become weak, and how it could be strengthened. The author warns that we must learn the craft of cooperation if we are to make our complex society prosper, yet he reassures us that we can do this, for the capacity for cooperation is embedded in human nature.

 

About Richard Sennett

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Richard Sennett teaches sociology at the London School of Economics and New York University
 
Published January 10, 2012 by Yale University Press. 337 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction, Law & Philosophy, Self Help. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Together

Publishers Weekly

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Citing current and historical sources, as well as providing numerous examples and anecdotes, NYU and London School of Economics sociology professor Sennett (The Craftsman) explores the origins of cooperation, the myriad factors that have led (and lead) to its erosion—making it "less open, less ...

Feb 20 2012 | Read Full Review of Together: The Rituals, Pleasu...

The Telegraph

It aims to be a practical, how-to guide for maximising co-operation and avoiding tribalism, but ends up a sort of high-class self-help book – Tony Robbins rewritten by a philosophy PhD.

Mar 06 2012 | Read Full Review of Together: The Rituals, Pleasu...

London Review of Books

6 · 22 March 2012 » Jenny Turner » Superficially Pally The print edition of the London Review of Books in which this book review appears and a downloadable PDF version of this book review are also available for purchase from the London Review Bookshop.

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Englewood Review of Books

Incoming search terms: richard sennett together together richard sennett

Apr 09 2012 | Read Full Review of Together: The Rituals, Pleasu...

Artswrap

Living with people who differ -- racially, ethnically, religiously, or economically -- is one of the most difficult challenges facing us today.

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Energy Bulletin

Commoners are less prone to lose themselves in the politics of hierarchical structures (corporations, government agencies, political parties), and can remain rooted in their social base while advancing a political agenda.

Mar 28 2012 | Read Full Review of Together: The Rituals, Pleasu...

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