Published January 12, 2021

On January 12, Jennifer Howard discussed her book, Clutter: An Untidy History, an expansive assessment of our relationship to the things that share and shape our lives, in conversation with Meredith Hindley. Howard sets her own personal struggle with clutter against a meticulously researched history of just how the developed world came to drown in material goods.

“Define use and beauty: Does an object matter because of its associations or because of what it can do? What does possessing it cost in time, money, or mental and environmental health?”

Jennifer Howard, Clutter: An Untidy History

“Jennifer Howard has written a brilliant and beautiful meditation on the nature of our attachment to things. Reading Clutter made me long for a life without clutter.” ―Malcolm Gladwell, New York Times bestselling author

“Howard’s exploration of one dark corner of consumer culture is quick-witted and insightful―and, appropriately for the subject, refreshingly concise. … A keen assessment of one of society’s secret shames and its little-understood consequences.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“In her stern and wide-ranging new manifesto, “Clutter: An Untidy History,” journalist Jennifer Howard takes the anti-clutter message a step further. Howard argues that decluttering is not just a personally liberating ritual, but a moral imperative, a duty we owe both to our children and to the planet.” ―Jennifer Reese, Washington Post

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