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David Graeber: New book “Bullshit jobs”

David Graeber. Picture credit to: RSA.

David Graeber, a professor of anthropology at the London School of Economics, has recently published a new book “Bullshit Jobs: A Theory”. This book is an investigation of his ideas previously outlined in an article written in Strike! Magazine in 2013, where he posits the existence of ‘bullshit jobs’, jobs that are primarily or entirely made up of tasks which the person doing them considers to be pointless, unnecessary or even pernicious, being secretly aware of this. He also argues that these bullshit jobs have been created just for the sake of keeping us all working.


In the book, the author outlines how bullshit jobs came to be about and how they turned out to be so prolific, investigating their psychological and political effects. Towards the end of the book, the author suggests giving people a basic income, one that is sufficient to live on, as a potential solution to this phenomenon. This, it is argued, would detach livelihood from work, allowing people to work when they want to, in what they wished, or even not at all. This would mean that people could choose not to take on bullshit jobs, which, assuming the former wanted to do something more meaningful with their lives, would lead to the elimination of the latter.


David Graeber, “Bullshit jobs – A theory”, Simon & Schuster, May 2018


More information at:

Eliane Glaser, “Bullshit Jobs: A Theory by David Graeber review – the myth of capitalist efficiency”, The Guardian, May 25th 2018

About Hannah Trippier

Hannah Trippier has written 6 articles.

The views expressed in this Op-Ed piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the view of Basic Income News or BIEN. BIEN and Basic Income News do not endorse any particular policy, but Basic Income News welcomes discussion from all points of view in its Op-Ed section.


  • Strum61

    Concerned regarding the UN agenda 21/30 Sustainable everything. Look very much like a blueprint for the globalist and elites to, as they becoming part of the “community” own and manage / control all what mother earth provides, including air, water, food and humans, “the eaters”. Indications are eradicating poverty will be eradicated by providing basic human needs for all, globally. That means shelter, food, water and clothes. UBI doesn’t figure in their plans. Look very much like a resource grab for the wealthy elites with humans being blamed for so called global warming rather than the haves dropping fossil fuels and identifying a service type model and other means to make money from the masses.

    • Lisa

      Where are you coming up with this info from Conservatives who want a slave labor society especially in the US?

  • Lisa

    Where are you coming up with this info from Conservatives who want a slave labor society especially in the US?

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