What’s Happening to Home?

Since I work mostly from home, the problem of establishing boundaries between work and life is one I frequently contemplate. I thought What’s Happening to Home?: Balancing Work, Life, and Refuge in the Information Age might have some helpful insights, however I found that the book was geared more to diagnosing and defining the problem than to improving it.

The book was published in 2002, which explains why some of the arrangements seemed so novel to the author (like everyone having cell phones and internet, using phones as alarm clocks, and the like).  Nowadays I feel like working from home and blurring lines between work and home are more ubiquitous and documented.

Perhaps because these ideas were new at the time of the book’s publication, the author avoids many conclusions.  The ideas she floats seem a little arbitrary (she’s ok with nannies and housecleaners, but outsourcing cooking makes her uncomfortable) and I didn’t think there was ever a very satisfactory explanation of why having a home matters.

The book raises lots of concepts and conflicts to think over, and contains interesting information about workplace evolution.  You won’t find many tips or suggestions to help you define your boundaries, but What’s Happening to Home could help spur your thinking as you navigate your own solutions.


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One thought on “What’s Happening to Home?

  1. The first thing that comes to mind is the concept of cottage industries. Originally, work was at home and everyone contributed. I think we’re so compartmentalized that it’s hard to make it work. A person working at home has their work to do, kids have their work to do and it’s not the same.

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