29th October 2010 Thirty Years on from ‘Women on the Line’: Researching Gender and Work, Panel Report from Work, Employment and Society Conference, Brighton, September 2010

The repub­li­ca­tion in 2009 of Miriam Glucksmann’s ethnog­ra­phy of fac­tory work, Women on the Line (orig­i­nally pub­lished in 1982 under the pseu­do­nym, Ruth Cavendish) was the start­ing point for a panel dis­cus­sion on research­ing gen­der and work at the Work, Employ­ment and Soci­ety Con­fer­ence, which took place in Brighton in Sep­tem­ber 2010. I approached Miriam…

27th October 2010 The Visibility and Invisibility of Washing

I’ve been giv­ing a lot of thought to wash­ing lately. I don’t have a wash­ing machine in my apart­ment in Cagliari which means that some­thing I usu­ally take for granted – being able to wash and dry my clothes at home and when­ever I like – imposes itself as an activ­ity to find a solution…

22nd October 2010 More Small Encounters

Cor­rec­tion In Roma Cen­trale train sta­tion, there is a wait­ress who offers table ser­vice. Most cus­tomers buy from the bar; why not, it’s cheaper. Peo­ple from all over the world pass through the sta­tion, and few of us under­stand the Ital­ian ser­vice cul­ture and its demar­ca­tion of space. We sit at a table, two British, two…

15th October 2010 The Works

Melton, Suf­folk, Sat­ur­day 9th Octo­ber. It’s marked on o/s explorer map 197 (28/51) just as ‘works’, and I don’t know what this place used to make. The works are closed now [one], though I don’t think they’ve been closed for long. The chip­board is too new [two], the fences haven’t been bro­ken down, there’s not…

9th October 2010 Making Work

I am cur­rently stay­ing in the city of Cagliari in the south of Sar­dinia where I’ve noticed street ven­dors, many of whom are young(ish) men from Sene­gal, seek­ing to direct peo­ple into park­ing spaces (which are often scarce in the city). Appar­ently, this isn’t pri­mar­ily about park­ing. I’m told it’s a tac­tic to gen­er­ate sales,…

5th October 2010 The Sound of the Sell: San Benedetto Fish Market, Cagliari

My first taste of the fish mar­ket in Cagliari was just that. It seemed to me that as soon as we got out of the car parked next to the mar­ket the air quite lit­er­ally tasted of fish. Down a few steps into the fish sec­tion of the purpose-built cov­ered Mer­cato San Benedetto, we were…

2nd October 2010 Markers of Work That No Longer Exists: Net Drying in Lowestoft

I saw the wooden posts pho­tographed in these pic­tures on a recent visit to Low­est­oft (on the east coast of the UK) to research the his­tory of fish­ing there. They looked strange but estab­lished on a small stretch of land between the sea and the main road, in the area north of the town known…