An Ethnography of Wall Street

Author: Karen Ho

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822391376

Category: Social Science

Page: 389

View: 4934


Financial collapses—whether of the junk bond market, the Internet bubble, or the highly leveraged housing market—are often explained as the inevitable result of market cycles: What goes up must come down. In Liquidated, Karen Ho punctures the aura of the abstract, all-powerful market to show how financial markets, and particularly booms and busts, are constructed. Through an in-depth investigation into the everyday experiences and ideologies of Wall Street investment bankers, Ho describes how a financially dominant but highly unstable market system is understood, justified, and produced through the restructuring of corporations and the larger economy. Ho, who worked at an investment bank herself, argues that bankers’ approaches to financial markets and corporate America are inseparable from the structures and strategies of their workplaces. Her ethnographic analysis of those workplaces is filled with the voices of stressed first-year associates, overworked and alienated analysts, undergraduates eager to be hired, and seasoned managing directors. Recruited from elite universities as “the best and the brightest,” investment bankers are socialized into a world of high risk and high reward. They are paid handsomely, with the understanding that they may be let go at any time. Their workplace culture and networks of privilege create the perception that job insecurity builds character, and employee liquidity results in smart, efficient business. Based on this culture of liquidity and compensation practices tied to profligate deal-making, Wall Street investment bankers reshape corporate America in their own image. Their mission is the creation of shareholder value, but Ho demonstrates that their practices and assumptions often produce crises instead. By connecting the values and actions of investment bankers to the construction of markets and the restructuring of U.S. corporations, Liquidated reveals the particular culture of Wall Street often obscured by triumphalist readings of capitalist globalization.

Red Tape

Bureaucracy, Structural Violence, and Poverty in India

Author: Akhil Gupta

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822351102

Category: History

Page: 368

View: 9827


Examining the chronic, widespread poverty in India, the world's fourth largest economy, Akhil Gupta theorizes the relation between the state in India and the poor as one of structural violence.

Between Citizen and State

An Introduction to the Corporation

Author: David A. Westbrook

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317263278

Category: Social Science

Page: 242

View: 6683


Between Citizen and State is an intrepid and readable introduction to, and insightful commentary on, the role of the corporation in the modern world. Corporate actors have typical motivations, opportunities, temptations - they are characters, and their interactions follow familiar plotlines. Part I, Background, introduces the characters and their context. Part II, Internal Struggles, explains common conflicts in terms of well-known court cases. Part III, External Relations, examines relationships between the corporation, individuals, and the state.


Following Soft Drinks from New York to New Guinea

Author: R. Foster

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 023061017X

Category: Social Science

Page: 275

View: 8699


Coca-Globalization explores globalization through an historical and anthropological study of soft drinks such as Coke and Pepsi, examining how they have become more than mere commodities.

Enforcing Order

An Ethnography of Urban Policing

Author: Didier Fassin

Publisher: Polity

ISBN: 0745664792

Category: Social Science

Page: 320

View: 9898


Most incidents of urban unrest in recent decades - including the riots in France, Britain and other Western countries - have followed lethal interactions between the youth and the police. Usually these take place in disadvantaged neighborhoods composed of working-class families of immigrant origin or belonging to ethnic minorities. These tragic events have received a great deal of media coverage, but we know very little about the everyday activities of urban policing that lie behind them. Over the course of 15 months, at the time of the 2005 riots, Didier Fassin carried out an ethnographic study in one of the largest precincts in the Paris region, sharing the life of a police station and cruising with the patrols, in particular the dreaded anti-crime squads. Far from the imaginary worlds created by television series and action movies, he uncovers the ordinary aspects of law enforcement, characterized by inactivity and boredom, by eventless days and nights where minor infractions give rise to spectacular displays of force and where officers express doubts about the significance and value of their own jobs. Describing the invisible manifestations of violence and unrecognized forms of discrimination against minority youngsters, undocumented immigrants and Roma people, he analyses the conditions that make them possible and tolerable, including entrenched policies of segregation and stigmatization, economic marginalization and racial discrimination. Richly documented and compellingly told, this unique account of contemporary urban policing shows that, instead of enforcing the law, the police are engaged in the task of enforcing an unequal social order in the name of public security.

Engineering Culture

Control and Commitment in a High-Tech Corporation

Author: Gideon Kunda

Publisher: Temple University Press

ISBN: 9781592135479

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 320

View: 8535


A revised edition of the classic text on the sociology of management and organization.

Advertising and Anthropology

Ethnographic Practice and Cultural Perspectives

Author: Timothy de Waal Malefyt,Robert J. Morais

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 0857852035

Category: Social Science

Page: 200

View: 6214


Examining theory and practice, Advertising and Anthropology is a lively and important contribution to the study of organizational culture, consumption practices, marketing to consumers and the production of creativity in corporate settings. The chapters reflect the authors' extensive lived experienced as professionals in the advertising business and marketing research industry. Essays analyze internal agency and client meetings, competitive pressures and professional relationships and include multiple case studies. The authors describe the structure, function and process of advertising agency work, the mediation and formation of creativity, the centrality of human interactions in agency work, the production of consumer insights and industry ethics. Throughout the book, the authors offer concrete advice for practitioners. Advertising and Anthropology is written by anthropologists for anthropologists as well as students and scholars interested in advertising and related industries such as marketing, marketing research and design.

Networking Futures

The Movements Against Corporate Globalization

Author: Jeffrey S. Juris

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 9780822342694

Category: Political Science

Page: 378

View: 9075


Since November 30, 1999, when 50,000 protesters converged on Seattle to shut down the World Trade Organization meetings, anti-corporate globalization activists have staged protests against multilateral institutions in cities including Prague, Barcelona, Genoa, and Cancun. Barcelona has emerged as a critical hub, as Catalans have played key roles within the anarchist-inspired Peoples' Global Action and the World Social Forum meetings. In 2001 and 2002, the anthropologist Jeffrey R. Juris participated in Barcelona's Movement for Global Resistance. Combining ethnographic research and activist political engagement, he attended hundreds of meetings, gatherings, and protests while also taking part in online discussions and forums. Those experiences are the basis of Networking Futures, the first ethnography of anti-globalization movements and transnational activist networking. In an account full of activist voices and on-the-ground detail, Juris provides a history of anti-corporate globalization movements, an examination of their connections to local dynamics in Barcelona, and an analysis of the movements' networking politics, or organization and decision-making practices. Depicting direct-action protests in Barcelona and other European cities, he describes how far-flung activist networks are embodied during the protests, and how networking politics are performed in urban spaces during these deliberately spectacular events. He explores emerging forms of grassroots media activism within anti-corporate globalization movements, explaining how activists have used e-mail lists, Web pages, and open editing software to organize actions, share information, collectively produce documents, coordinate at a distance, and stage "electronic civil disobedience." Juris argues that anti-corporate globalization activists are not only responding to growing poverty, inequality, and environmental devastation. Through their organizational structures, decision-making practices, and uses of digital technologies, they are also generating social laboratories for the production of alternative democratic values and practices.

Flexible Firm

The Design of Culture at Bang & Olufsen

Author: Jakob Krause-Jensen

Publisher: Berghahn Books

ISBN: 1782380329

Category: Social Science

Page: 318

View: 1114


Bang & Olufsen, the famous Danish producer of high-end home electronics, is well known as an early exponent of value-based management: the idea that there should be consistency in what the organisation does, a certain continuity between what the company develops and sells, and the beliefs and practices of the employees. This study investigates how company values are communicated and the collective identity is articulated through the use of such concepts as ‘culture’, ‘fundamental values’, and ‘corporate religion’, as well as how employees negotiate these ideas in their daily working lives. As this book reveals, the identification of values, meant to create cohesion and solidarity among employees, came to symbolise and engender a split between the staff and the other parts of the company. By examining the rise and fall of the value-based management approach, this volume offers the indispensible insight of anthropological enquiry to expose how social realities challenge conventional management strategies and therefore must be considered in the development of new management techniques.

Body of Power, Spirit of Resistance

The Culture and History of a South African People

Author: Jean Comaroff

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022616098X

Category: Social Science

Page: 303

View: 3398


In this sophisticated study of power and resistance, Jean Comaroff analyzes the changing predicament of the Barolong boo Ratshidi, a people on the margins of the South African state. Like others on the fringes of the modern world system, the Tshidi struggle to construct a viable order of signs and practices through which they act upon the forces that engulf them. Their dissenting Churches of Zion have provided an effective medium for reconstructing a sense of history and identity, one that protests the terms of colonial and post-colonial society and culture.

The Lobster Gangs of Maine

Author: James M. Acheson

Publisher: UPNE

ISBN: 1611681189

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 205

View: 5102


An anthropologist describes the working world of Maine lobstermen, focusing on the intricate personal network that sustains them.

Double Cross

Japanese Americans in Black and White Chicago

Author: N.A

Publisher: U of Minnesota Press

ISBN: 9781452905969


Page: 182

View: 2664


Corporate Culture and Environmental Practice

Making Change at a High-technology Manufacturer

Author: Jennifer A. Howard-Grenville

Publisher: Edward Elgar Publishing

ISBN: 1847207049

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 165

View: 8797


Jennifer Howard-Grenville has put together a timely and sparkling narrative of environmental advocacy within a highly successful, well managed and technically sophisticated organization. Corporate Culture and Environmental Practice is rich in ethnographic detail and wonderfully telling of the struggles structurally marginalized environmental specialists take part in when trying to balance immediate cost, schedule and production targets with long-term social and environmental risks. A blend of Mary Douglas, Karl Weick and Charles Perrow, this is a must read for students of organizations as well as the rest of us who worry about the fate of the planet. John Van Maanen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US Jennifer Howard-Grenville has hit the nail on the head technology is not the cause of our environmental problems; culture is. In Corporate Culture and Environmental Practice, she deftly shows us that the norms and practices that guide the way we think about our relationship with the natural environment are the critical point at which to understand the development of the technologies that facilitate that interface. Written from first-hand experiences, this book is a thoughtful and revealing glimpse into the culture of a company that only an accomplished organizational scholar can provide. Andrew J. Hoffman, University of Michigan, US Corporate Culture and Environmental Practice is an outstanding study that looks inside a firm to understand conditions under which it adopted superior environmental practices. It makes a persuasive case for not modeling firms as unitary actors. This careful and well-written study will be useful to both environmental policy scholars and practitioners. Aseem Prakash, University of Washington, US This book breaks new ground in understanding the generally difficult process of selling peripheral, in this case, environmental or sustainability initiatives to the mainstream culture of a firm. To those who seek to be change agents, it offers powerful ideas toward success for such intentions. But this book is not only for those on the outside of the mainstream; it offers lessons for anyone seeking change, even at the top. John R. Ehrenfeld, former Director, MIT Technology, Business, and Environment Program, US Although much has been written about how corporations deal with environmental problems, few books delve into the inner-workings of a company seeking to deal with environmental demands as deeply as Corporate Culture and Environmental Practice. Through first-hand observation, Howard-Grenville provides unique insights into the cultural factors that shape environmental management decisions in a major semiconductor manufacturing firm. By analyzing those decisions through a framework that relates internal and external factors, she provides a new cultural perspective on corporate environmental practices that should be of strong interest to both business leaders and students of corporate environmental management. Dennis A. Rondinelli, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and Duke University, US Culture patterns of meaning and associated actions speaks volumes about what matters and what doesn t. Jennifer Howard-Grenville s study describes how corporate culture enables organizational change in some instances, or blocks it in others. As the need for corporate response to increasingly vital environmental issues looms more important, we need change models to help companies adapt to new realities. This study is vital 0reading for scholars and practitioners who care about the future. Jim Post, Boston University, US I found the writing style very engaging. The author writes clearly and with little jargon. She makes the technology come alive and gives a feel for elements that might be very complex in the hands of another writer. Alfred Marcus, University of Minnesota, US This innovative book explores from an insider s perspective a company s environmental decisions and actions. Based on clo

Arbitraging Japan

Dreams of Capitalism at the End of Finance

Author: Hirokazu Miyazaki

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520273486

Category: Social Science

Page: 199

View: 2413


For many financial market professionals worldwide, the era of high finance is over. In this book, the author examines the careers and intellectual trajectories of a group of pioneering derivatives traders in Japan during the 1990s and 2000s.

Behind the Development Banks

Washington Politics, World Poverty, and the Wealth of Nations

Author: Sarah Babb

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 0226033678

Category: Political Science

Page: 336

View: 7351


The World Bank and other multilateral development banks (MDBs) carry out their mission to alleviate poverty and promote economic growth based on the advice of professional economists. But as Sarah Babb argues in Behind the Development Banks, these organizations have also been indelibly shaped by Washington politics—particularly by the legislative branch and its power of the purse. Tracing American influence on MDBs over three decades, this volume assesses increased congressional activism and the perpetual “selling” of banks to Congress by the executive branch. Babb contends that congressional reluctance to fund the MDBs has enhanced the influence of the United States on them by making credible America’s threat to abandon the banks if its policy preferences are not followed. At a time when the United States’ role in world affairs is being closely scrutinized, Behind the Development Banks will be necessary reading for anyone interested in how American politics helps determine the fate of developing countries.

Far-Fetched Facts

A Parable of Development Aid

Author: Richard Rottenburg,Allison Brown,Tom Lampert

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 0262264447

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 280

View: 9262


In 1996, the sub-Saharan African country of Ruritania launched a massive waterworks improvement project, funded by the Normesian Development Bank, headquartered in Urbania, Normland, and with the guidance of Shilling & Partner, a consulting firm in Mercatoria, Normland. Far-Fetched Facts tells the story of this project, as narrated by anthropologists Edward B. Drotlevski and Samuel A. Martonosi. Their account of the Ruritanian waterworks project views the problems of development from a new perspective, focusing on technologies of inscription in the interactions of development bank, international experts, and local managers. This development project is fictionalized, of course, although based closely on author Richard Rottenburg's experiences working on and observing different development projects in the 1990s. Rottenburg uses the case of the Ruritanian waterworks project to examine issues of standardization, database building, documentation, calculation, and territory mapping. The techniques and technologies of the representational practices of documentation are crucial, Rottenburg argues, both to day-to-day management of the project and to the demonstration of the project's legitimacy. Five decades of development aid (or "development cooperation," as it is now sometimes known) have yielded disappointing results. Rottenburg looks in particular at the role of the development consultant (often called upon to act as mediator between the other actors) and at the interstitial spaces where developmental cooperation actually occurs. He argues that both critics and practitioners of development often misconstrue the grounds of cooperation -- which, he claims, are moral, legal, and political rather than techno-scientific or epistemological.

Do You Know...?

The Jazz Repertoire in Action (Large Print 16pt)

Author: Robert R. Faulkner


ISBN: 1459606035


Page: 396

View: 6797


Every night, somewhere in the world, three or four musicians will climb on stage together. Whether the gig is at a jazz club, a bar, or a bar mitzvah, the performance never begins with a note, but with a question. The trumpet player might turn to the bassist and ask, ''Do you know Body and Soul'?'' - and from there the subtle craft of playing the jazz repertoire is tested in front of a live audience. These ordinary musicians may never have played together - they may never have met - so how do they smoothly put on a show without getting booed offstage In ''Do You Know . . . ?'' Robert R. Faulkner and Howard S. Becker - both jazz musicians with decades of experience performing - present the view from the bandstand, revealing the array of skills necessary for working musicians to do their jobs. While learning songs from sheet music or by ear helps, the jobbing musician's lexicon is dauntingly massive: hundreds of thousands of tunes from jazz classics and pop standards to more exotic fare. Since it is impossible for anyone to memorize all of these songs, Faulkner and Becker show that musicians collectively negotiate and improvise their way to a successful performance. Players must explore each others' areas of expertise, develop an ability to fake their way through unfamiliar territory, and respond to the unpredictable demands of their audience - whether an unexpected gang of polka fanatics or a tipsy father of the bride with an obscure favorite song. ''Do You Know . . . ?'' dishes out entertaining stories and sharp insights drawn from the authors' own experiences and observations as well as interviews with a range of musicians. Faulkner and Becker's vivid, detailed portrait of the musician at work holds valuable lessons for anyone who has to think on the spot or under a spotlight.

The Sense of Dissonance

Accounts of Worth in Economic Life

Author: David Stark

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 9781400831005

Category: Social Science

Page: 264

View: 341


What counts? In work, as in other areas of life, it is not always clear what standards we are being judged by or how our worth is being determined. This can be disorienting and disconcerting. Because of this, many organizations devote considerable resources to limiting and clarifying the logics used for evaluating worth. But as David Stark argues, firms would often be better off, especially in managing change, if they allowed multiple logics of worth and did not necessarily discourage uncertainty. In fact, in many cases multiple orders of worth are unavoidable, so organizations and firms should learn to harness the benefits of such "heterarchy" rather than seeking to purge it. Stark makes this argument with ethnographic case studies of three companies attempting to cope with rapid change: a machine-tool company in late and postcommunist Hungary, a new-media startup in New York during and after the collapse of the Internet bubble, and a Wall Street investment bank whose trading room was destroyed on 9/11. In each case, the friction of competing criteria of worth promoted an organizational reflexivity that made it easier for the company to change and deal with market uncertainty. Drawing on John Dewey's notion that "perplexing situations" provide opportunities for innovative inquiry, Stark argues that the dissonance of diverse principles can lead to discovery.

Medicalizing Ethnicity

The Construction of Latino Identity in a Psychiatric Setting

Author: Vilma Santiago-Irizarry

Publisher: Cornell University Press

ISBN: 9780801487521

Category: Medical

Page: 178

View: 7536


In Medicalizing Ethnicity, Vilma Santiago-Irizarry shows how commendable intentions can produce unintended consequences. Santiago-Irizarry conducted ethnographic fieldwork in three bilingual, bicultural psychiatric programs for Latino patients at public mental health facilities in New York City. The introduction of "cultural sensitivity" in mental health clinics, she concludes, led doctors to construct essentialized, composite versions of Latino ethnicity in their drive to treat mental illness with sensitivity. The author demonstrates that stressing Latino differences when dealing with patients resulted not in empowerment, as intended, but in the reassertion of Anglo-American standards of behavior in the guise of psychiatric categories by which Latino culture was negatively defined. For instance, doctors routinely translated their patients' beliefs in the Latino religious traditions of espiritismo and Santeria into psychiatric terms, thus treating these beliefs as pathologies.Interpreting mental health care through the framework of culture and politics has potent effects on the understanding of "normality" toward which such care aspires. At the core of Medicalizing Ethnicity is the very definition of multiculturalism used by a variety of institutional settings in an attempt to mandate equality."

Basic income

the material conditions of freedom

Author: Daniel Raventós

Publisher: Pluto Pr

ISBN: 9780745326290

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 230

View: 8815


The first practical guide to how we can implement the revolutionary economic idea of Basic Income.