- Series: Thomas Dunne Book
- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 2nd edition (February 15, 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780312141042
- ISBN-13: 978-0312141042
- ASIN: 0312141041
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 19 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #310,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Existential Pleasures of Engineering (Thomas Dunne Book) 2nd Edition
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...clear, erudite, and occasionally eloquent, a useful read for engineers given to self-scrutiny and a stimulating one for the layman interested in the ancient schism between machines and men's souls. -- Time Magazine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“Gracefully written . . . refreshing and highly infectious enthusiasm . . . imaginatively engineered.” ―The New York Times Book Review
“A useful read for engineers given to self-scrutiny, and a stimulating one for the layman interested in the ancient schism between machines and men's souls.” ―Time
“An urbane, witty, intellectually far-ranging, large-spirited hymn to homo faber.” ―The Wall Street Journal
“Enchanting.” ―The New Yorker
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Top customer reviews
I couldn't put down the book and came away wishing I had read it before I went to engineering school. All the arguments ring true for me and it was a joy to read. I'll certainly be passing my copy along to my nieces currently in high school.
Even though I am not an engineer in real life, I had once hoped to become one and have fantasized being a Vulcan Engineer in Star Trek sites. So, although I am not a professional engineer, I completely respect such qualified persons and feel that they are indeed among the prime movers of civilization.
I have had a personal copy for many years. It is a very good book. The author is one of the few men who actually made a decent living out of engineering so is very enthusiastic. Engineering is a wonderful study and a terrible profession. If you have the intelligence to actually handle the material why not do something that will earn you some money? Oh well.
The lessons go beyond the profession of engineering. The book could be used in an ethics course for Banking, Medicine, Political Science and any other profession where power corrupts.
Chapter 3 is full of insights on why we always needed strict financial oversight of big business (remember Glass-Steagall Act?). See p. 19-20 for starters: "Although they were men of conscience, they did not assume that the world could be ruled by conscience alone. Civilized men had long recognized that laws and regulations, mutually agreed upon, are the only sound protection for society against the self-interest of each of us. The founding fathers of the Constitution considered this as a given. James Madison asserted that men needed governing because they were not angels. Even Thomas Jefferson, that great believer in popular democracy, said, 'In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down by the claims of the constitution.'"