"Where does stuff come from? To find out, Harvey Molotch goes behind the scenes for the details behind the products - like the garlic press, the Palm Pilot, and the "gangster" PT Cruiser. We find ourselves in the design studio, on the factory floor, and at the local plumbing store, learning how goods end up with the capacity to be made, to sell, and to be used. Molotch shows how the look, the touch, and the mechanics of any product reflect the way our culture and economy combine - how we interact, do business, exploit technology, and use art. In his hands, the toaster is not just a toaster; it becomes a map to the world." "From ancient artifacts to contemporary gadgets, we learn why some products, like lamps and toys, respond quickly to Fashion, while others, like pencils and toilets, stay stuck. We see how retailers and other "middle-men" influence what a thing can be and why some cities become creative milieus that put their own unique stamp on stuff. We find out how the sparks of creativity turn into material form - sometimes to delight, same times to offend." "Where Stuff Comes From suggests that if we want more socially and environmentally benign products, we need to better understand the product system we now have. Ultimately, Molotch suggests how a new design politics can yield a better world."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Molotch takes us on a fascinating exploration into the worlds of technology, design, corporate and popular culture. We now see how corporations, designers, retailers, advertisers, and other middle-men influence what a thing can be and how it is made. We see the way goods link into ordinary life as well as vast systems of consumption, economic and political operation. The book is a meditation into the meaning of the stuff in our lives and what that stuff says about us.