The Chair: Rethinking Culture, Body and Design

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9780393046557: The Chair: Rethinking Culture, Body and Design
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This work offers a new perspective on one of the most common cultural artefacts, the chair, explaining the history, physiology and politics of how and why we sit the way we do. The chair, ever-present in out habitat, forcefully shapes the social and physical dimensions of our lives. Tracing the history of the chair as we know it from its crudest beginnings in the Neolithic Age to its place in the modern ergonomic office, Galen Cranz uses anecdotes, literary references and famous designs to document our ongoing love affair with the chair - despite its potentially harmful effects on our bodies. Cranz reveals how the chair's evolution in Western society has been governed not by a quest for comfort or practicality but by the designation of status. Part social history and part manifesto for a new way of living, this book brings a critical eye to the place where we spend most of out waking lives.

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About the Author:

Galen Cranz, Ph.D. is professor of architecture at the University of California at Berkeley.

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