Environment: Down with Designers?

William Blake saw the world's wonders in a grain of sand. Victor Papanek sees its iniquities in a chrome-plated marmalade guard for toast. Dean of the design school at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia, Papanek argues his view in a controversial new book, Design for the Real World (Pantheon; $8.95), which blames industrial designers for almost every variety of pollution and waste.

To the layman, these designers may seem innocuous people who spend their time adding chrome strips to auto bodies, streamlining fountain pens, creating bright new packages. But Papanek indicts...

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