Builders [electronic resource] : class, gender and ethnicity in the construction industry / Darren Thiel
- Thiel, Darren
- London ; New York : Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2012.
- Physical Description:
- x, 186 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.
- Routledge advances in ethnography ; 8
- Restrictions on Access:
- License restrictions may limit access.
- Contracting and subcontracting : the build, its builders and their ethnic communities -- Managing "in the office" -- Working "on the tools" -- Time, recreation and workplace culture -- Becoming a builder and being working class -- Building masculinity : bodies, law and violence -- Economy, informality and social stratification -- Conclusion: cultures, capitalisms and class reproduction -- App. A: Specifications and costs of the building project.
- "Building workers constitute between five and ten per cent of the total labour market in almost every country of the world. They construct, repair and maintain the vital physical infrastructure of our societies, and we rely upon and trust their achievements every day. Yet we know surprisingly little about builders, the organisation of their work, or the business relations that constitute their industry. This book redresses this lacuna by taking an in depth and close-up look at a section of London building workers and businessmen, highlighting a largely hidden social world. Based on seven years of fieldwork where the author worked as a builder in London, this book describes the informal and practical cultural activities that underpin the construction economy, analysing how gifts, kick-backs, favours and loyalties served as the glue of this economy and also the fundamental frameworks for comprehending the mores and cultures of the building workers and businessmen. Thiel also explores the ethnic diversity and divisions within the trade, considering the centrality of the interrelationships of class, ethnicity and gender in the builders cultural and practical lives and showing how these factors interrelated with economy and polity to produce the building industry and its buildings. Based predominately in cultural and economic sociology, the book will also be of interest to those working in the fields of gender studies; social class and inequality; migration and ethnicity; urban studies; and social identity"--
"Building workers constitute between five and ten per cent of the total labour market in almost every country of the world. They construct, repair and maintain the vital physical infrastructure of our societies, and we rely upon and trust their achievements every day. Yet we know surprisingly little about builders, their cultures, the organization of their work or the business relations that constitute their industry. This book, based on one-year's participant observation on a London construction site, redresses this gap in our knowledge by taking a close-up look at a section of building workers and businessmen. By examining the organizational features of the building project and describing the skill, sweat, malingering, humour and humanity of the building workers, Thiel illustrates how the builders were mostly autonomous from formal managerial control, regulating their own outputs and labour markets. This meant that the men's ethnic, class and gender-bound cultural activities fundamentally underpinned the organization of their work and the broader construction economy, and thereby highlights the continuing centrality of class-bound culture and social stratification in a post-industrial, late modern world. Thiel outlines the on-going connections and intersections between economy, state, class and culture, ultimately showing how these factors interrelated to produce the building industry, its builders, and its buildings. Based predominately on cultural and economic sociology, this book will also be of interest to those working in the fields of gender and organizational studies; social class and inequality; migration and ethnicity; urban studies; and social identities"--
- 9780415688642 (hardback)
- Bibliography Note:
- Includes bibliographical references and index.
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