The Utopia of Rules

David Graeber

The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy is a 2015 book by anthropologist David Graeber about how people “relate to” and are influenced by bureaucracies. Graeber previously wrote Debt: The First 5000 Years and The Democracy Project, and was an organizer behind Occupy Wall Street. Graeber signed a book deal with Melville House toward the end of 2014, and The Utopia of Rules was released on February 24, 2015.

Graeber describes the contemporary era as the “age of total bureaucratisation,” in which public and private bureaucracies, now so intertwined as to be effectively indistinguishable, have become the main mechanisms for Wall Street profits, and describes how bureaucratization brings the threat of violence (through legal and police enforcement) into almost every aspect of daily life in wealthy countries.”