Doormen

Peter Berman, Author . Univ. of Chicago $25 (288p) ISBN 978-0-226-03970-1

Ever wonder what lurks in the hearts and minds of those stoic, unflappable, dapperly uniformed men (yes, they're nearly always men) who man the doors of your city's apartment buildings? Provoked by his own awkward interaction with his friend's doorman, Bearman, a sociologist at Columbia University, embarked on this exhaustive study of New York City doormen and the often complex dynamics between them and their buildings' tenants. Though any urban dweller will find something of interest, this isn't really a layman's book, and Bearman's prosaic handling dries out a potentially fruitful subject. He tends to spend too much time examining the obvious questions (e.g., why do doormen find their jobs at once "boring and stressful"?), while barely touching upon others that seem deeper and more fertile, such as the ways in which tenants tend to see their doormen as "socially dead." Because Bearman refuses for the most part to engage in any real cultural observations beyond some obvious extrapolations from his data, much of the meat of the book resides in the many short interviews with doormen speaking their (normally unspoken) minds. But what they reveal is well worth the price of admission. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 08/29/2005
Release date: 10/01/2005
Show other formats
FORMATS
Open Ebook - 305 pages - 978-1-282-53823-8
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.