25th September 2011 How to Use ‘Mad Men’ to Think About Advertising

Towards the end of the first series of the Emmy-award win­ning US drama, Mad Men, set in the fic­tional world of the New York adver­tis­ing agency, Stir­ling Cooper, in the early 1960s, there is a scene which offers a seduc­tive vision of the work of adver­tis­ing prac­ti­tion­ers and their role in weav­ing com­mer­cial fables. The…

19th September 2011 Divine Command Theory

The shel­ters on plat­form 3 are behind royal blue ply­wood. National Express ask for my patience. I can’t see work, but I can hear it. Around the side of the hoard­ing, away from the wind there’s the entrance: a door propped open by a trailer fill­ing up with knocked down walls, some bricks still cemented…

13th September 2011 The Metaphor of the Octopus Worker

Being from the United States where work is mostly about money and where orga­nized labor is fre­quently demo­nized, when trav­el­ing it’s quite refresh­ing to encounter muse­ums devoted to work­ers. One such museum is Copenhagen’s Arbe­j­der­museet (Work­ers’ Museum). Among the many stim­u­lat­ing items is a plate from the early 1970s depict­ing a woman who needs eight…