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Episode Notes: Of Monks and Machines

Ye Olde Podcaste

Blake here: this podcast was stupid fun to produce. I’d never taken anything like this on before, and I’m so glad that I decided to go all in. If you enjoyed Of Monks and Machines, I promise you’ll enjoy everything that my SOTP peers have made, and in the meantime stay tuned for wherever I find myself next semester.


Prologue: The Kalahari

Nicole M. Waguespack: The Organization of Male and Female Labor in Foraging Societies: Implications for Early Paleoindian Archaeology

Marshall Sahlins: The Original Affluent Society

Mikako Toda: Disability and Charity among Hunter gatherers and Farmers in Cameroon

Chapter 1: The Luddite Fallacy

The Finer Times: Work in the Middle Ages

Victoria Corwin, Dartmouth Ancient Books Lab: Medieval Book Production and Monastic Life:

The Getty Museum: Scriptorium Exhibit:

Johannes Trithemius: In Praise of Scribes:

William J. Bernstein: Masters of the Word: How Media Shaped History (Chapter 5, “Punch and Counterpunch”):

The University of Houston: Religion and Print:

Jeremy M. Norman: From Gutenberg to the Internet (Introduction/Chapter 1):

The Conversation: What the Industrial Revolution Really Tells Us About the Future of Automation and Work; The Industrial Revolution: The Industrial Revolution: an age of opportunity

Evan Andrews, Who Were the Luddites?:

Vivian Jiang, BusinessInsider: 16 Weird Jobs That No Longer Exist:

Chapter 2: The New Frontier

Vox: 40 Maps that Explain Food in America (stats from USDA, but fantastic visualizations):, Nine out of 10 new jobs are going to those with a college degree

Anthony P. Carnevale, Nicole Smith, Jeff Strohl, Georgetown University, Recovery: Job Growth and Education Requirements Through 2020:, Key Trends in Youth Employment:

The Russell Sage Foundation: Educational Attainment and Achievement (Chartbook):, Statistics Portal: % Of Americans with College Degrees:

The University of Virginia, Occupation Change, 1920-2010:

David J. Deming, Kadeem Noray, Harvard University: STEM Careers and Technological Change:

CNN Business: I spent 53 minutes in Amazon Go and saw the future of retail:

CBC: Is Amazon Go the future of grocery shopping?:

McKinsey Digital: Where machines could replace humans — and where they can’t (yet):

The Washington Post: At this fast-food drive-through, the person taking your order might not be a person at all

Hollywood Reporter: Netflix Online Streams to Surpass DVD Rentals (published 2010):

The New Yorker: The Bullshit Job Boom (Based on the book “Bullshit Jobs” by David Graeber):

Valyant AI:

Chapter 3: Second Place

Carl Benedikt Frey, Michael A. Osborne, Oxford University: The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation?

Michael Gibbs, The University of Chicago, IZA: How is new technology changing job design?:

Econsultancy: Robots or Humans: Which provide a better customer experience?

HBR: When customers want to see the human behind the product:

Derek Thompson, The Atlantic: A World Without Work (also relevant to the Prologue):


Intro: “Walking Along” by Kevin MacLeod @
Prologue Background: “Sincerely” by Kevin Macleod
First transition: “Infinite Perspective” by Kevin Macleod
Second transition: “Beauty Flow” by Kevin Macleod 
Third transition: “Wisps of Whorls” by Kevin Macleod

The remaining tracks were composed by AI at

Royalty free sound effects from

Thank you to Yunyun Wang for the support, Keenan Ashbrook for the hilarious voiceovers, and Krithik Ranjan for answering my dumb questions.

See you all next season.

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