Cræft in the US

Craeft US

I’ve been hugely inspired by the work of American authors on craft – Richard Sennett, Peter Korn, Matthew Crawford, Howard Risatti, to name but a few. I am therefore thrilled to be entering into the debate in the US about the importance and value of craft in everyday life.

Mine is an exploration into the rich time-depth of many of our crafts, charting their origins back through the medieval and ancient past. Woven into these narratives are the stories of my own experiences, those working as an archaeologist, as a small-holder as well as those cherished memories I have of working on a range of BBC history programmes – Victorian FarmEdwardian Farm and Wartime Farm.

But I like to think that I arrive at some of the same conclusions as the great craft-theorists: Crafting defines us. We are makers. It’s healthy. We are at our best when we are making, from natural materials, to a standard, for use, and with care and compassion.

November book launch for Cræft

Cræft: How Traditional Crafts are About More Than Just Making

“In a period of meaningless mass manufacturing, our growing appetite for hand-made objects, artisan food, and craft beverages reveals our deep cravings for tradition and quality. But there was a time when craft meant something very different; the Old English word cræft possessed an almost indefinable sense of knowledge, wisdom, and power.

In this fascinating book, historian and popular broadcaster Alex Langlands goes in search of the mysterious lost meaning of cræft. Through a vibrant series of mini-histories, told with his trademark energy and charm, Langlands resurrects the ancient craftspeople who fused exquisite skill with back-breaking labour-and passionately defends the renewed importance of cræft today.”

Click here to find out more . . .