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Minding the Machine: Languages of Class in Early Industrial America Hardcover – August 30, 2004


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 243 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press (August 30, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520227816
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520227811
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,985,522 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

"Minding the Machine is an illuminating contribution to our understanding of antebellum mechanization and the origins of the modern middle class. Carefully focusing on key antebellum discussions of mechanical knowledge, training, control, opportunity, bodily and mental health, Rice convincingly shows how deeply these were pervaded by conceptions of social and class authority."—John F. Kasson, author of Amusing the Million: Coney Island at the Turn of the Century

"Stephen Rice has brought provocative questions and fresh research to bear on that vexed topic-the origins of the American middle class. Using the increased mechanization of production during the antebellum decades as his focus, he has provided a fascinating picture of workplace changes and the cultural responses they elicited."—Joyce Appleby, author of Inheriting the Revolution: The First Generation of Americans

"Rice's book explores the intellectual processes by which the emerging middle class in antebellum America strove to understand and control the new industrial order, mapping class relations onto less contested social and technical terrain. Within strange and unusual places and movements seemingly removed from the center of workplace change and conflict—such as health reform and the creation of chess playing automatons—crucial questions of power and authority were debated."—David Zonderman, author of Aspirations and Anxieties: New England Workers and the Mechanized Factory System, 1815-1850

From the Back Cover

"Minding the Machine is an illuminating contribution to our understanding of antebellum mechanization and the origins of the modern middle class. Carefully focusing on key antebellum discussions of mechanical knowledge, training, control, opportunity, bodily and mental health, Rice convincingly shows how deeply these were pervaded by conceptions of social and class authority."-John F. Kasson, author of Amusing the Million: Coney Island at the Turn of the Century "Stephen Rice has brought provocative questions and fresh research to bear on that vexed topic-the origins of the American middle class. Using the increased mechanization of production during the antebellum decades as his focus, he has provided a fascinating picture of workplace changes and the cultural responses they elicited."-Joyce Appleby, author of Inheriting the Revolution: The First Generation of Americans "Rice's book explores the intellectual processes by which the emerging middle class in antebellum America strove to understand and control the new industrial order, mapping class relations onto less contested social and technical terrain. Within strange and unusual places and movements seemingly removed from the center of workplace change and conflict-such as health reform and the creation of chess playing automatons-crucial questions of power and authority were debated."-David Zonderman, author of Aspirations and Anxieties: New England Workers and the Mechanized Factory System, 1815-1850

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on February 9, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Stephen P. Rice's meticulous and scholarly study, Minding The Machine: Languages Of Class In Early Industrial America, offers a new interpretation of class formation in America during the decades before the Civil War. College-level collections strong in social and industrial history will consider this an important survey of the nation's early industrial development period, when changes raised questions about the value of machinery and associated issues of equality versus inequity among rich and poor. An intriguing, seminal survey particularly recommended for university library American History collections, Minding The Machine is an inherently fascinating, informed and informative read.
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