Anthropology / Everything Human

America’s Postindustrial Futures

Labor

  • Field Notes

    Frank stands at the site of his last job, which was at a chemical company.

    America’s Postindustrial Futures

    The current administration’s controversial “America First” trade policies have tapped into a pervasive feeling of abandonment across the postindustrial United States. But not all former factory workers are interested in reviving American industry.

  • Field Trips

    Bone-handled toothbrushes excavated from the privy at 27–29 Endicott Street illustrate the importance of dental hygiene for the women who worked and lived at this brothel.

    Secrets of a Brothel Privy

    The outhouse of a 19th-century Boston brothel might not be the first place you’d think to look for revealing clues about the past—but maybe it should be.

  • Crossroads

    postindustrial world - Steel mills were the economic backbone of many cities across the Midwest and Northeast until the 1980s. When the industry left, former workers not only took a hit economically—they also felt displaced and suffered disillusionment and a loss of identity.

    Life and Death After the Steel Mills

    In her study of a community devastated by industry's flight, anthropologist Christine Walley raises questions about how to create and support meaningful work in a postindustrial world.

  • Crossroads