Questions on Work and Intellectual Development

Carl Trueman has a lengthy reflection and asks some pertinent and pressing questions on the nature of work and human intellectual development. Recalling his job at a factory as a young man in the 1980s, Trueman writes concerning those who were still at their positions on the line when he had moved on: Their work possessed no intrinsic dignity: it was unskilled, repetitive, poorly paid, and provided no sense of achievement. Continue Reading...

Work as if It Mattered

The conversations over the last few weeks here on work have raised a couple of questions. In the context of criticisms on the perspectives on work articulated by Lester DeKoster and defended by me, commenter John E. Continue Reading...

Leisure and Work, Art and Culture

There have been some engaging challenges to the view presented of work and its relationship to culture and civilization over the past few weeks (here, here, and here). I hope to post a more substantive response to some of the comments in the next few days. Continue Reading...

Labor and the limits of work

There has been some good discussion over the past week and Labor Day holiday about the nature of work and its role in our lives (particularly here). The first thing I’d like to point out about Lester DeKoster’s claims regarding work is that he has in mind, at least partially, the classical Greek philosophical distinction between the active and contemplative life, particularly its disdain of manual labor. Continue Reading...

Work and western civilization

Leading up to next week’s Labor Day holiday we’ve been reflecting on the nature of work the last few days. Today I’d like to conclude this little series with a note on the relationship between work and civilization, with specific reference to work in the context of Western civilization. Continue Reading...

Work and the Two Great Love Commandments

One of this week’s contributions to Acton Commentary, in honor of the upcoming American Labor Day holiday is titled, “Work and the Two Great Love Commandments.” In this piece I focus on how we can view work as a means to express our love for our neighbor and for God. Continue Reading...

Youth: Problem or Solution for New Jobs?

The front page of a recent issue of the Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano read like an Italian “Help Wanted” listing: “Lavori per Giovani Cercasi” (cf. Aug. 13 2010). Unfortunately, this eye-catching headline was not a classified ad targeting young professionals for job openings at the Holy See’s many curial and administrative offices – the prized “stable” positions that would have Roman youth queuing in lines much longer those to enter Sunday Mass at St. Continue Reading...

Salary and Significance

During a recent conversation, a Chinese friend of mine commented on the lack of political involvement that she has observed in her peers, especially in comparison to American college students. She attributes this lack of involvement to the fact that the Chinese do not believe that political action can change the policies or even the identities of their leaders. Continue Reading...

DeKoster on Work and Food

I mentioned Lester DeKoster’s little classic, Work: The Meaning of Your Life—A Christian Perspective, in the context of the Lutheran World Federation’s General Assembly and the theme, “Give us today our daily bread.” Continue Reading...