How to Do Nothing

Resisting the Attention Economy

Ranked #37 in Environmentalism, Ranked #52 in Silicon Valleysee more rankings.

This thrilling critique of the forces vying for our attention re-defines what we think of as productivity, shows us a new way to connect with our environment and reveals all that we’ve been too distracted to see about our selves and our world.

When the technologies we use every day collapse our experiences into 24/7 availability, platforms for personal branding, and products to be monetized, nothing can be quite so radical as… doing nothing. Here, Jenny Odell sends up a flare from the heart of Silicon Valley, delivering an action plan to resist capitalist narratives of...

Reviews and Recommendations

We've comprehensively compiled reviews of How to Do Nothing from the world's leading experts.

Ezra Klein That's from @the_jennitaur's book "How To Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy," which hit me particularly hard, and made this conversation such a delight. (Source)

Bo Ren @ClaytonHartford @the_jennitaur Best book I read in 2019! A must-read. (Source)

Bryan Formhals Such a great book. Gave me a lot of confidence to pursue some new ideas. (Source)

Juliana Castro Favorite books read in 2019 🧵 1. How to do nothing by @the_jennitaur. Essay, beautifully written. Not a book about working less, but about understanding why we do, our relationship with technology, choosing how/what to attend to, and the politics of all of that. Also, birds. (Source)

Rhodri Marsden @espiers I agree, it’s a fantastic book. (Source)

Tim Kastelle This is a great book! Artist Jenny Odell explains why place is the antidote to the attention economy: @chengela interviews ⁦@the_jennitaur⁩ (Source)

Lauren Mechling Odell writes about opening up to a new kind of experience: the experience being not having your nose pressed into your phone, and how fascinating the world around you is if you actually tap into it. It’s also just incredibly smart: it’s a lot about conceptual art, philosophy, and activists in California. (Source)

Stephanie Kelley Exhaustively researched yet philosophical and poetic in its delivery, How to Do Nothing will make you rethink your relationship to thought itself. Incorporating history, journalistic narrative, scientific studies, literature, philosophy and even the study of trees and birdwatching, Odell mounts a convincing defense of individual attention. (Source)

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