Life Inc.: How the World Became a Corporation and How to Take It Back

By Douglas Rushkoff
This didn't just happen.
In Life Inc., award-winning writer, documentary filmmaker, and scholar Douglas Rushkoff traces how corporations went from being convenient legal fictions to being the dominant fact of contemporary life. Indeed, as Rushkoff shows, most Americans have so willingly adopted the values of corporations that they're no longer even aware of it.
This fascinating journey, from the late Middle Ages to today, reveals the roots of our debacle. From the founding of the first chartered monopoly to the branding of the self; from the invention of central currency to the privatization of banking; from the birth of the modern, self-interested individual to his exploitation through the false ideal of the single-family home; from the Victorian Great Exhibition to the solipsism of MySpace-the corporation has infiltrated all aspects of our daily lives. Life Inc."" exposes why we see our homes as investments rather than places to live, our 401(k) plans as the ultimate measure of success, and the Internet as just another place to do business.
Most of all, Life Inc. shows how the current financial crisis is actually an opportunity to reverse this six-hundred-year-old trend and to begin to create, invest, and transact directly rather than outsource all this activity to institutions that exist solely for their own sakes.
Corporatism didn't evolve naturally. The landscape on which we are living-the operating system on which we are now running our social software-was invented by people, sold to us as a better way of life, supported by myths, and ultimately allowed to develop into a self-sustaining reality. It is a map that has replaced the territory.
Rushkoff""illuminates both how we've become disconnected from our world and how we can reconnect to our towns, to the value we can create, and, mostly, to one another. As the speculative economy collapses under its own weight, Life Inc. shows us how to build a real and human-scaled society to take its place.


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Posted November 18, 2010, 8:00 PM with category of Management & Workplace Culture
Douglas Rushkoff follows his full size, largely distributed Life, Inc. with an indie distributed, smaller book called Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age. The biggest difference though, is not the size or distribution -- but that it may be his most powerful writing yet. Read more

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Posted January 15, 2010, 7:08 PM with category of Management & Workplace Culture
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Posted June 17, 2009, 8:15 PM with category of Current Events & Public Affairs
Life Inc. , the recent book by writer, filmmaker, and scholar Douglas Rushkoff, examines how corporations took over America and how we can now, in a struggling economy, use that situation to revive natural growth, and take back control from the grip of corporations that contributed to creating the situation we're in. Overall, the book is an inspiring proposal to look at the downside of the current economy with optimism and enthusiasm to make positive change. Read more


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ISBN: 9781400066896

About the Hardcover

Publisher Random House (NY)
Publish date 06/01/2009
Pages 274
ISBN-13 9781400066896
ISBN-10 1400066891
Language English

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