Work: A Very Short Introduction tells the story of work — how we strive for security, reward, and often, meaning. The image of a job captures our imagination from an early age, usually prompted by the question: ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’. Work, whether it be paid, unpaid, voluntary, or obligatory, is woven into the fabric of human society. For many it forms our identity. For others it is a tedious necessity. What is ‘work’? What cultural and social factors influence work? Globalization and technology both affect the evolution of work. Living is problematic without paid work, and for many it is catastrophic.