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SPOTLIGHT ON HBR AT 90 Spotlight About the Spotlight Artist Each month we illustrate our Spotlight package with a series of works from an accomplished artist. We hope that the lively and cerebral creations of these photographers, painters, and installation artists will infuse our pages with additional energy and intelligence to amplify what are often complex and abstract concepts. This month we showcase the “rayographs” of Man Ray, the modernist giant. Born in Philadelphia, Ray moved to Paris in 1921, where he experimented with painting, filmmaking, sculpture, and, of course, photography. He created his rayographs by placing objects directly onto photosensitive material and exposing them to light. View more…show more content…
(See the sidebar “Saving Ourselves from Global Provincialism.”) The Age of “Scientific Management” In the last two decades of the 19th century, the U.S. was shifting—uneasily—from a loosely connected world of small towns, small businesses, and agriculture to an industrialized network of cities, factories, and large companies linked by rail. A rising middle class was professionalizing—early incarnations of the American Medical Association and the American Bar Association date from this era—and mounting a progressive push against corrupt political bosses and the finance capitalists, who were busy consolidating industries such as oil and steel in the best robberbaron style. Progressives claimed special wisdom rooted in science and captured in processes. Frederick Taylor, who wrote that “the best management is a true science, resting upon clearly defined laws, rules, and principles,” clearly counted himself in their camp (fans such as Louis Brandeis and Ida Tarbell agreed). His stated goal was the “maximum prosperity for the employer, coupled with the maximum prosperity for each employee,” through “a far more equal division of the responsibility between the management and the workmen.” Translation (lest the reader overestimate Taylor’s respect for workers’ potential The Management Century hbr.org Idea in Brief In the early years of the last century, “improving the practice of management” meant making it more scientific. A new
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