modern times

It must have been four, five, or more years ago, when I had a conversation on the anthropology of work with one of my three teachers, ↑Kurt Beck. Somewhere into our talk Kurt mentioned Chaplin’s ‘↑Modern Times‘ (1936), associating the famous scenes of Chaplin at the assembly line with instances of workers ‘fighting against the conveyor belt,’ described in ethnographies of work. The gist was that workers at assembly lines by their practices not necessarily do fight metaphorically against their bosses, or even commit sabotage. Happens, of course, but isn’t always the case. Rather they actively ↵appropriate the technological artefact … Continue reading