Publication date:

22 December 2005

Length of book:

338 pages


AltaMira Press

ISBN-13: 9780759105829

This excellent new volume in the series from the Society for Economic Anthropology focuses on the role of labor in contrasting world economies. The contributors offer a diverse collection of case studies, illustrating labor processes in a wide range of contexts in both western and nonwestern societies. The volume presents a detailed portrait of how the mobilization of labor changes dramatically with variations in social, political and economic conditions, as well as location and time period, reaffirming the unique contribution of anthropology to economic research. Individual sections include discussions on household labor, firms and corporations, and state and transnational conditions. This book will be a valuable resource for scholars, students and interested readers of international economics, anthropology, development issues, labor studies and sociology.
One of the key strengths of the book is the strong empirical thread that runs through it. Another is that the contributors present strong and well-reasoned arguments for their respective positions. Finally, the book is strengthened by the fact that the contributors, while raising important questions about mainstream economies, so not sing from the same page in the hymn book. This makes for the presentation of an engaging set of views on labor in cross-cultural perspective that is sure to promote considerable discussion in the field and will push the state of knowledge in economic anthropology a good distance from where it has been in the past decade.