Society for the Anthropology of Work


At the Meetings in San Jose

While attending the San Jose AAA meetings of 2006 many were prompted to remember the last time anthropologists swarmed to the West Coast, to attend the San Francisco alternative meetings of 2004 during the UNITE HERE hotel strike. Thinking back, some were undoubtedly disappointed to see Coca Cola products at the San Jose Convention Center despite the Labor Relations Commission's resolution for a boycott. On an more optimistic note, however, we had a vibrant set sessions this year. Invited sessions included "The Anthropology of 'The Real Thing': Developing an Activist Research Agenda for Corporate Globalization" and "Critical Intersections of Anthropology and History, Culture and Class: Working Within and Against the Writings and Teaching of Gerald M. Sider," co-sponsored with AES. The line up of panels illustrated a growing interest in topics such as the transnationalism and the globalization of work, labor rights, and the linkage of theory to praxis.

Arlie Hochschild Receives the Conrad Arensberg Award

On Saturday, November 18, Berkeley sociology professor Arlie Hochschild received the Conrad Arensberg Award. Hocschild is the co-director at the Center for Working Families at the University of California, Berkeley and author of The Managed Heart, the Second Shift, and The Time Bind. During her address, "Intimate Life in Market Times," the reputed scholar of work and family life presented ongoing research in the sphere of "caring work"
and the commercialization of intimate life.

The Eric Wolf Prize

Each year SAW awards the Eric R. Wolf Prize for the graduate paper that best demonstrates an anthropological approach to the study of work in the tradition of political economic scholarship. In 2006, the Wolf Prize was presented to Troy Wilson (Washington State U), in absentia, for his essay "Migrant Brokers of the Global Tongue: A Case Study in Guadalajara, Mexico."
Present at the meetings was Laurie Duthie (UCLA), the 2005 Eric Wolf Prize recipient whose award-winning essay, "White Collars with Chinese
Characteristics: Global Capitalism and the Formation of a Social Identity,"
was published in AWR XXVI(3):1-12.

Call for Invited Session Proposals

We thank Belinda Leach for the wonderful job she's done as Program Editor for the past two years. Sharryn Kasmir and Charles Menzies, program co-editors for the 2007 AAA meeting, are now soliciting proposals for SAW Invited Sessions. Sessions accepted with this status are labeled as such on the program and do not go through the regular review process. Topics pertaining to next year's conference theme of "diversity, inequality and justice" are welcome but not required. Submit name(s) of organizer(s), session title and abstract, names and paper titles for all presenters, and
name(s) of discussant(s) (if any) no later than February 15th to and

The SAW Mentor Program

By Rob O'Brien (Temple U)

SAW has provided mentoring both formally and informally in the past. With the advent of online services through AnthroSource, SAW membership can now provide new opportunities for the mentoring of students and younger scholars. We are making major changes to the formal structure and invite you to join us. Students with questions or ideas to discuss and those with a bit more experience willing to provide answers, feedback, and structured presentations at next years AAA should contact SAW's student reps at or

Please send SAW column contribution ideas to Angela Jancius (