There comes a time in every metaphysician’s life when she finally thinks—sure, maybe I should learn more about woodworking. She might then find herself reading something like Christopher Schwarz’s The Anarchist’s Workbench. In a chapter titled “All The Mistakes” Schwarz (2020: 47) reflects on attempts to design “a perfect bench,” starting with the honestly named $175 Workbench:

The poor bench has changed so much during the last 19 years that it’s almost unrecognizable. Despite its oddness, I still love it…. If I had to rebuild this bench, it would be much the same, except I would remove all the knockdown hardware…. I wish the benchtop was longer (it’s 70″ long now—I don’t know why).

This is a review of Bounds of Possibility—not of The Anarchist’s Workbench. But like Schwarz, the authors of Bounds of Possibility begin honestly: “This book is long. It could have been somewhat...

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