Professor Rana Partap Behal
Deshbandu College, University of Delhi, India
History of Tea Plantation. Labour in Assam. India During the Colonial Rule.
teaches Indian colonial history at Deshbandhu College of the University of Delhi. He was guest scholar at, among other places, Cornell University (USA) and Cambridge University (UK). The focus of his research is the history of work in modern India.
At the International Research Center, Rana Behal is working on the history of tea plantations in colonial Assam. At the center of his study is an analysis of the life and
work of the growers and their workforce. The thematic structure is focused on the emergence and transformation of tea plantations in Assam, which developed into a major producer for the world market, and many migrants from other parts of the Indian subcontinent were engaged in working these plantations. The project is embedded within the larger framework of the nineteenth-century plantation history of British overseas colonies. These plantations were all primarily focused on exports in the agrarian sector, the use of industrial organizational methods, and the large-scale mobilization of conscripted labor.
One Hundred Years of Servitude. Political Economy of Tea Plantations in Colonial Assam. New Dehli: Tulika Books, 2014.
with Alice Mah, and Babacar Fall, eds. Rethinking Work. Global Historical and Sociological Perspectives. New Delhi: Tulika Books, 2011.
‘Boundaries and Shifting Forms of Resistance. Labour in Assam Tea Plantations During Colonial Rule’. In Sklaverei und Zwangsarbeit zwischen Akzeptanz und Widerstand, edited by Elisabeth Herrmann-Otto, 427–51. Hildesheim: Georg Olms Verlag, 2011.
‘Changing Paradigms of South Asian Labour Historiography’. In Grenzenüberschreitende Arbeitergeschichte. Konzepte Und Erkundungen = Labour History Beyond Borders. Concepts and Exploration, edited by Marcel van der Linden and Eva Himmelstoss, 63–76. Leipzig: AVA - Akademische Verlagsanstalt, 2010.
‘Coolie Drivers or Benevolent Paternalists? British Tea Planters in Assam and the Indenture Labour System’. Modern Asian Studies 44, no. 01 (2010): 29.
with Marcel van der Linden, eds. Coolies, Capital, and Colonialism. Studies in Indian Labour History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007.
Last updated: February 8, 2016
Dr. Isaïe Dougnon
Université de Bamako, Mali
Work and Social Justice in Contemporary Mali.
works at the Faculté des Lettres, Langues, Arts et Sciences Humaines (FLASH) of the University of Bamako. From 1998 to 2003 he researched peasant migration and the transfer of knowledge from Dogon Country to the Office du Niger. From 2003 to 2005 he coordinated the project “Water Anthropology,” and growing out of this was a study investigating the impact of migration on the irrigation of northern Mali.
In his current project Lifecycle, Rites and Career in Modern Work: The Case of Contemporary Mali, Isaïe Dougnon looks at modern work and addresses the question as to what degree new technology and organizational structures have changed the lifecycle and its attendant mores and customs. An investigation of the interraction between lifecycle and career can shed light on such changes in both the workaday and life-worlds of post-colonial Africa. A unique aspect here is the change that has occurred in people’s perception of time – a perception which structures an individual’s occupational career: first he goes to school, graduates, gets a job, and then eventually retires. In order to accelerate their careers, civil servants as well as businessmen and intellectuals make resort to both secret and public rites. Isaïe Dougnon is investigating the question as to precisely which rites are involved and how the perception of time functions in certain public institutions so as to guarantee unbroken progress in an individual’s career; in addition, he is scrutinizing the repercussions of this manipulation of time in inter-generational relations and with respect to work-time and lifetime in Africa.
‘Migration and Competition Around Commercial Spaces. The Case of Songhay Migrants at the Kumasi Central Market, Ghana 1930-1948’. In African Roads to Prosperity. People en Route to Socio-Cultural and Economic Transformations, edited by Akinyinka Akinyoade and Jan-Bart Gewald, 74–93. Boston, MA: Brill, 2015.
‘Migration as Coping with Risk. African Migrants’ Conception of Being far from Home and States’ Policy of Barriers’. In African Migrations. Patterns and Perspectives, edited by Abdoulaye Kane and Todd H. Leedy, 35–58. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2013.
‘Migration of Children and Youth in Mali. Global versus Local Discourses’. In African Children at Work. Working and Learning in Growing up for Life, edited by M. F. C. Bourdillon and Gerd Spittler, 143–68. Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2012.
‘Child Trafficking or Labor Migration? A Historical Perspective from Mali’s Dogon Country’. Humanity 2, no. 1 (2011): 85–105.
‘Migration for “White Man’s Work”. An Empirical Rebuttal to Marxist Theory’. African Identities 7, no. 3 (2009): 353–71.
Travail de blanc, travail de noir. La migration des paysans dogon vers l’Office du Niger et au Ghana, 1910-1980. Paris: Karthala, 2007.
Last updated: February 8, 2016
Professor Jacob Eyferth
University of Chicago, USA
Cotton and Gender in the Chinese Revolution, 1949–1966.
teaches the social history of modern China in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Chicago. He received his doctorate at Leiden University and has been recipient of a variety of fellowships to universities such as Oxford, Harvard and Rutgers. Before arriving at Chicago, he taught at the Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. His areas of focus lie in aspects of gender research as well as the history of technology and of everyday life in the course of the Chinese Revolution.
At the International Research Center, Jacob Eyferth reconstructed the life of rural women, who were a marginalized segment of the population in a double sense. Spinning and weaving had been at the center of the lives of these Chinese women over many centuries, but this changed abruptly with the socialist revolution of 1949, when weaving along with other trades became state-controlled. Women were increasingly forced to abandon their domestic work and take part, together with their husbands, in “productive” work. In China this change was celebrated as liberating women, but it also destroyed social networks and marginalized the lives of women.
‘Moins pour plus. Surtravail des femmes rurales et sous-consommation dans la Chine de Mao’. Translated by Geneviève Knibiehler. Clio. Femmes, Genre, Histoire, no. 41 (2015): 65–87.
‘Women’s Work and the Politics of Homespun in Socialist China, 1949–1980’. International Review of Social History 57, no. 03 (2012): 365–91.
‘技术的源与流:四川夹江造纸匠群体中的行业崇拜、祖先与知识的传播 [= Technology as Source and Stream. Trade Gods, Ancestors, and the Transmission of Knowledge among Papermakers in Jiajiang, Sichuan]’. Translated by 艾费特. The Chinese Journal for the History of Science and Technology 32, no. 1 (2011): 18–27.
‘Craft Knowledge at the Interface of Written and Oral Cultures’. East Asian Science, Technology and Society 4, no. 2 (2010): 185–205.
Eating Rice from Bamboo Roots. The Social History of a Community of Handicraft Papermakers in Rural Sichuan, 1920-2000. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2009.
How China Works. Perspectives on the Twentieth-Century Industrial Workplace, ed. New York, NY: Routledge, 2006.
Last updated: February 8, 2016
Professor Babacar Fall
Cheikh-Anta-Diop University, Dakar
Youth Employment Crisis in Africa: A Historical Perspective on the Informal Sector and Emigration toward Europe. The Case Study of Senegal.
is head of the History and Geography Didactic Department at Cheikh-Anta-Diop University in Dakar, Senegal. Before becoming a Fellow of the International Research Center, he was a guest researcher at the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung (Social Science Research Center Berlin) as well as at Stanford University. He has recently completed his book project Senegal: The Labour Question in the Twentieth Century. In 2008 he was bestowed an honorary doctorate by the University of Le Havre.
At the International Research Center, Babacar Fall is investigating the topic of Youth Employment Crisis in Africa: A Historical Perspective on the Informal Sector and Emigration toward Europe – the Case Study of Senegal. He broaches several important issues, among them being the history and character of the informal work sector in African cities, its increasing role in view of the crisis hitting the job market, and the role of youth in this sphere. His study focuses on youth unemployment and their limited prospects in Senegal as well as on the growing hope that greater happiness can be found in Europe. He also illuminates the flipside of this development and critically investigates the strengths and weaknesses of controlling illegal immigration.
with Ineke Phaf-Rheinberger, and Andreas Eckert, eds. Travail et culture dans un monde globalisé. De l’Afrique à l’Amérique latine / Work and Culture in a Globalized World. From Africa to Latin America. Paris: Karthala, 2015.
‘Une conftontation d’acteurs de la décolonisation. Mamadou Dia et les syndicats au Sénégal (1956-1962)’. In Les indépendances en Afrique. L’événement et ses mémoires, 1957/1960-2010, edited by Odile Goerg, Jean-Luc Martineau, and Didier Nativel, 51–72. Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2013.
Le travail au Sénégal au XXe siècle. Paris: Karthala, 2011.
with Rana P. Behal and Alice Mah, eds. Rethinking Work. Global Historical and Sociological Perspectives. New Delhi: Tulika Books, 2011.
Social History in French West Africa. Forced Labor, Labor Market, Women and Politics. Amsterdam: SEPHIS, 2002.
Ajustement structurel et emploi au Sénégal, ed. Paris: Karthala, 1997.
Le travail forcé en Afrique-Occidentale française, 1900-1946. Paris: Karthala, 1993.
Last updated: February 8, 2016
Dr. Therese Garstenauer
Universität Wien, Vienna, Austria
Was für eine Art von Arbeit ist der Dienst am Staat?
("What Kind of Work is Civil Service?")
studied sociology and Russian literature and history at various universities in Vienna, Moscow and Edinburgh. From 2000 to 2002 she investigated dismissals and employment bans in Austria as being a form of National Socialist persecution. Before arriving at the Research Center she worked as a research assistant at the Institut für Wirtschafts- und Sozialgeschichte (Institute for Economic and Social History) at the University of Vienna. In her dissertation she analyzed the contacts and cooperation between Russian and “Western” scholars in the sphere of research into women and gender.
In the work she is carrying out at the Center, Therese Garstenauer is investigating the nature of work in the civil service. Working from a comparative perspective, she is taking a look at Austria and the Soviet Union in the 1920s. What was the range and diversity of positions and hierarchies encompassed by civil service? What was the concept of a career upon which the subsequent realization of such in the civil service was based? What gender-specific structures are characteristic of civil service? To what degree does a civil servant’s scope of duties change in the course of his working life?
with Thomas Hübel, and Klara Löffler, eds. Arbeit im Lebenslauf. Verhandlungen von (erwerbs-)biographischer Normalität. Bielefeld: transcript, 2016.
‘Der Staat als Arbeitgeber. Österreich und Sowjetrussland/ die Sowjetunion in der Zwischenkriegszeit’. In Arbeit und Recht seit 1800. Historisch und vergleichend, europäisch und global, edited by Joachim Rückert, 329–42. Köln: Böhlau, 2014.
‘Beamte im Un/Ruhestand. Überlegungen zu österreichischen Staatsbediensteten’. Edited by Josef Ehmer. Österreichische Zeitschrift für Geschichte [= Themenheft Ruhestand] 22, no. 3 (2011): 81–111.
Geschlechterforschung in Moskau. Expertise, Aktivismus und Akademie. Wien: LIT Verlag, 2010.
with Alexander Mejstrik, Peter Melichar, Alexander Prenninger, Christa Putz, and Sigrid Wadauer. Berufsschädigungen in der nationalsozialistischen Neuordnung der Arbeit. Vom österreichischen Berufsleben 1934 zum völkischen Schaffen 1938-1940. Wien: Oldenbourg, 2004.
Last updated: February 8, 2016
Professor Patrick Harries
University of Basel
Memory, Identity and Work in the African Diaspora. The Mozbieker Community at the Cape, South Africa, 1800–1920.
We are all deeply shocked to hear of the sudden death of our former fellow Professor Emer. Patrick Harris, 1950 - 2016. Our thoughts are with Patrick's family at this most difficult time of loss.
Patrick was professor of African History at the University of Basel from 2001 to 2014. Among other areas of interest, his research focused on the history of work, as well as the history of knowledge produced about Africa and Cape Town´s role in the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Patrick studied at UCT and received his doctorate at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London.
At re:work, Patrick concentrated workers taken from East Africa to the Americas via the Cape of Good Hope, c. 1785-1885. Cape Town served as both a refreshment station for this trade and as a site for the sale of slaves. His work changed perceptions of the quantification of the slave trade, its legality and organization and, most importantly, the lives of the slaves and the memory of their condition held by their descendants.
‘“Ideas of Liberty and Freedom”. Servile Labour at the Cape Colony Before and After Emancipation’. In Travail et Culture Dans Un Monde Globalisé. De l’Afrique à l’Amérique Latine / Work and Culture in a Globalized World. From Africa to Latin America, edited by Babacar Fall, Ineke Phaf-Rheinberger, and Andreas Eckert, 173–93. Paris: Karthala, 2015.
‘Middle Passages of the Southwest Indian Ocean. A Century of Forced Immigration Form Africa to the Cape of Good Hope’. The Journal of African History 55, no. 02 (July 2014): 173–90.
‘Slavery, Indenture and Migrant Labour. A Maritime Immigration from Mozambique to the Cape, c.1780-1880.’ African Studies 73, no. 3 (2014): 323–40.
‘Negotiating Abolition. Cape Town and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade’. Slavery & Abolition 34, no. 4 (2013): 579–97.
‘The Hobgoblins of the Middle Passage. The Cape and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade’. In The End of Slavery in Africa and the Americas. A Comparative Approach, edited by Ulrike Schmieder, Katja Füllberg-Stolberg, and Michael Zeuske, 27–50. Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2011.
‘From Public History to Private Enterprise. The Politics of Memory in the New South’. In Historical Memory in Africa. Dealing with the Past, Reaching for the Future in an Intercultural Context, edited by Mamadou Diawara, 121–43. New York, NY: Berghahn, 2010.
Butterflies & Barbarians. Swiss Missionaries & Systems of Knowledge in South-East Africa. Oxford: James Currey, 2007.
Work, Culture, and Identity. Migrant Laborers in Mozambique and South Africa, C.1860-1910. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1993.
Last updated: October 21, 2016
Dr. Jan Patrick Heiß
Universität Zürich, Switzerland
Work and Lifecycle in Transformation. The Case of a Hausa Village.
teaches at the ethnological seminar of the University of Zurich. His field studies have taken him primarily to Niger, Nigeria and Chad. His research focuses on the anthropology of work, anthropological linguistics, the relationship between the individual and society, and rural societies.
After studying ethnology, philosophy and African linguistics at the University of Frankfurt am Main, the University of Edinburgh, and in Berlin at the Free University and the Humboldt University, he received his doctorate from the University of Bayreuth. He went on to work at the Free University Berlin and the University of Mainz, and is presently at the University of Zurich. He is co-editor of the periodical Sociologus: Journal of Empirical Social Anthropology.
In his project Work and Lifecycle in Transformation: The Case of a Hausa Village, he is investigating the relationship between work and life-career in Daguilam, a Hausa village in Niger, in consideration of its history and regional classification. Work here is essentially focused on household economies, even with the market economy gaining increasing importance. This is accompanied by increased mobility, a shift in the household structure and a change in the work to be done as well as changes in career-life planning more generally. This development is embedded in a larger historical process that is impacted by the state, developmental agencies and advancing desertification.
‘Change and Continuity in Field-Cultivation, Migrants’ Labour, and Peasants’ Being – the Case of Hausa Peasants from the Village of Kimoram in Niger’. In Travail et culture dans un monde globalisé. De l’Afrique à l’Amérique latine / Work and Culture in a Globalized World. From Africa to Latin America, edited by Babacar Fall, Ineke Phaf-Rheinberger, and Andreas Eckert, 99–114. Paris: Karthala, 2015.
with Michaela Pelican, eds. ‘Making a Future’ in Contemporary Africa [= Journal Des Africanistes, 84 (1)]. Paris: Societée des Africanistes, 2014.
‘Kabiru. The Life of a Hausa Peasant in Niger’. In Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Hausa Studies: African and European Perspectives: Università Degli Studi Di Napoli ‘L’Orientale’, Napoli 5th-6th July 2010, edited by Sergio Baldi and Hafizu Miko Yakasai, 155–69. Napoli: Università delgi Studi di Napoli ‘L’Orientale’, Dipartamento di Studi e Ricerche su Africa e paesi arabi, 2011.
‘How to Explain Access to the Field. Lessons from Fieldwork Among the Yedina (or Buduma) of Lake Chad’. Anthropos 104, no. 1 (2009): 25–40.
with Andrea Behrends, and Stephen P. Reyna, eds. Crisis in Chad. Approaching the Anthropological Gap [= Sociologus, 57 (1)]. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2007.
Zur Komplexität bäuerlicher Feldarbeit in Afrika. Eine Fallstudie in einem Manga-Dorf (Niger). Münster: LIT Verlag, 2003.
Last updated: February 9, 2016
Dr. Alice Mah
University of Warwick, UK
What Transformation? Working Lives and Insecurity.
received her doctorate in 2008 from the sociology department of the London School of Economics. Her dissertation addressed the theme of Landscapes and Legacies of Industrial Ruination. She investigated the long-term social effects of deindustrialization by looking at industrial decline in the Niagara Falls region, in both Canada and the United States, in Newcastle upon Tyne in England, and
in Ivanovo in Russia. Before arriving at the International Research Center, she worked at Warwick for the European Commission’s FP 6 project CAPRIGHT
(Resources, Rights and Capabilities). In this project she was focusing on the historical development of labour market policies in Birmingham and Liverpool from 1870 to 1914. Her research interests encompass the sociology of work and occupation, socio-economic change, civic sociology, historical sociology, and social marginalization.
‘Dangerous Cargo and Uneven Toxic Risks. Petrochemicals in the Port of New Orleans’. In Cargomobilities. Moving Materials in a Global Age, edited by Thomas Birtchnell, Satya Savitsky, and John Urry, 149–62. New York, NY: Routledge, 2015.
Port Cities and Global Legacies. Urban Identity, Waterfront Work, and Radicalism. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan, 2014.
with Noel Whiteside. ‘Human Rights and Ethical Reasoning. Capabilities, Conventions and Spheres of Public Action’. Sociology 46, no. 5 (2012): 921–35.
‘Demolition for Development. A Critical Analysis of Official Urban Imaginaries in Past and Present UK Cities’. Journal of Historical Sociology 25, no. 1 (2012): 151–76.
Industrial Ruination, Community, and Place. Landscapes and Legacies of Urban Decline. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2012.
with Rana P. Behal, and Babacar Fall, eds. Rethinking Work. Global Historical and Sociological Perspectives. New Delhi: Tulika Books, 2011.
‘Memory, Uncertainty and Industrial Ruination. Walker Riverside, Newcastle upon Tyne’. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 34, no. 2 (2010): 398–413.
Last updated: February 9, 2016
Professor Richard Rottenburg
Universität Halle, Germany
Experimentalization of Governance in African Contexts.
teaches at the seminar for ethnology at the University of Halle. He lives and does his research in various countries in Africa. Among other career waystations, he taught for three years at the University of Transkei in South Africa. Much of his field research has led him to the Sudan. He is involved in diverse research projects of the Max Planck Institute and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation), for example the SPP 1448 “Adaptation and Creativity in Africa: Technologies and Significations in the Production of Order and Disorder.” A more comprehensive portrait of Professor Rottenburg can be found at the website of the Martin Luther University in Halle.
At the Research Center, Richard Rottenburg will be preoccupying himself with law, organizational structures, and science and technology, particularly within the African context and from an anthropological perspective. In these areas he is especially interested in “manufacturing” and the praxis of work.
with Sally Engle Merry, Sung-Joon Park, and Johanna Mugler, eds. The World of Indicators. The Making of Governmental Knowledge Through Quantification. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015.
with Andrea Behrends, and Sung-Joon Park, eds. Travelling Models in African Conflict Resolution. Translating Technologies of Social Ordering. Boston, MA: Brill, 2014.
with Jörg Gertel, and Sandra Calkins, eds. Disrupting Territories. Land, Commodification and Conflict in Sudan. Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer, 2014.
‘Ethnologie und Kritik’. In Ethnologie im 21. Jahrhundert, edited by Thomas Bierschenk, Matthias Krings, and Carola Lentz, 55–76. Berlin: Reimer, 2013.
with Paul Wenzel Geissler, and Julia Zenker, eds. Rethinking Biomedicine and Governance in Africa. Contributions from Anthropology. Bielefeld: transcript, 2012.
with Katharina Schramm, and David Skinner, eds. Identity Politics and the New Genetics. Re/Creating Categories of Difference and Belonging. New York, NY: Berghahn, 2012.
Far-Fetched Facts. A Parable of Development Aid. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2009.
‘Social and Public Experiments and New Figurations of Science and Politics in Postcolonial Africa’. Postcolonial Studies 12, no. 4 (2009): 423–40.
Last updated: February 15, 2016
Professor Gerd Spittler
Universität Bayreuth, Germany
Homo Laborans. Grundlagen einer Anthropologie der Arbeit.
teaches sociology and ethnology at the University of Freiburg, the University of Bayreuth, the University of Basel, and the University of Niamey. He was a Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (Berlin Institute for Advanced Studies) from 1999-2000 and at the Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung (Social Science Research Center Berlin) from 2007-2008. His field research is primarily done among Saharan farmers and nomads as well as those in the Sahel zone. His research focuses on the sociology of law, political ethnology, economic ethnology, and field-research methodologies.
At the International Research Center, Gerd Splitter will primarily be bringing to completion the book upon which he has been working for some time: Homo Laborans: Fundamentals of an Anthropology of Work. The book’s empirical bases are ethnographic studies on capitalistic work in the industrial and service sectors, on farmers and nomads, and on hunters and gatherers. The most important theoretical aspects in analysis of the material are work as performance, work as interaction, and work as domination. At the Research Center, Gerd Splitter will also be working on a compendium article on the Anthropology of Slavery and an article on Work and the Family in Africa.
Anthropologie der Arbeit. Ein ethnographischer Vergleich. Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 2016.
‘Work – Transformation of Objects or Interaction Between Subjects?’ In Global Histories of Work, edited by Andreas Eckert, 169–80. Berlin: De Gruyter Oldenbourg, 2016.
‘Arbeit zur Sprache bringen - ethnographische Annäherungen’. In Semantiken von Arbeit. Diachrone und vergleichende Perspektiven, edited by Jörn Leonhard and Willibald Steinmetz, 147–66. Köln: Böhlau, 2016.
‘Dichte Teilnahme und darüber hinaus’. Sociologus 64, no. 2 (2014): 207–30.
Arbeit zur Sprache bringen. Der ethnographische Zugang [= Vienna Working Papers in Ethnography / Wiener Arbeitspapiere zur Ethnographie, 1]. Wien: MeSoS Vienna, 2014.
‘Transformation of the Familiy Economy in Africa. From Pioneers to Survivors’. In Family, Ties and Care. Family Transformation in a Plural Modernity. The Freiberger Survey About Family Transformation in an International Comparison, edited by Hans Bertram and Nancy Ehlert, 521–36. Opladen: Budrich, 2012.
with Michael Bourdillon, eds. African Children at Work. Working and Learning in Growing up for Life. Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2012.
‘Beginnings of the Anthropology of Work. Nineteenth-Century Social Scientists and Their Influence on Ethnology’. In Work in a Modern Society. The German Historical Experience in Comparative Perspective, edited by Jürgen Kocka, 37–54. New York, NY: Berghahn, 2010.
‘Contesting The Great Transformation. Work in Comparative Perspective’. In Market and Society. The Great Transformation Today, edited by Chris Hann and Keith Hart, 160–74. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009.
Founders of the Anthropology of Work. German Social Scientists of the 19th and Early 20th Centuries and the First Ethnographers. Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2008.
Last updated: October 19, 2016