Precarious Creativity

Precarious Creativity

By Michael Curtin (editor)
Book Description

Precarious Creativity examines the seismic changes confronting media workers in an age of globalization and corporate conglomeration. This pathbreaking anthology peeks behind the hype and supposed glamor of screen media industries to reveal the intensifying pressures and challenges workers face. The authors take on crucial issues and provide insightful case studies of workplace dynamics regarding creativity, collaboration, exploitation, and cultural difference. Furthermore, they investigate working conditions and organizing efforts on all six continents, offering comprehensive analysis of contemporary screen media labor in places such as Lagos, Prague, Hollywood, and Hyderabad, across a range of job categories that includes visual effects, production services, and adult entertainment. With contributions from John Caldwell, Vicki Mayer, Herman Gray, Tejaswini Ganti, and others, this collection offers timely critiques of media globalization and broader debates about labor, creativity, and precarity.

“Every case study is an eye-opener, and no other book comes close in assessing the plight of creative workers in the era of global conglomerate Hollywood.” THOMAS SCHATZ, University of Texas at Austin

“A corrective to previous, U.S.-centric attempts to understand the global media economy by offering a bracing look at the dark underbelly of life for most media workers today.” DENISE MANN, University of California, Los Angeles

“A balanced and comprehensive portrayal of the reshaping of the contours of work and industry organization under the twin circumstances of digital disruption and a globalizing media system.” TOM O’REGAN, The University of Queensland

MICHAEL CURTIN is a professor of Film and Media Studies at University of California, Santa Barbara. KEVIN SANSON is a Lecturer in Entertainment Industries at Queensland University of Technology in Australia.

Table of Contents
  • List of Illustrations
  • Acknowledgments
  • 1.    Precarious Creativity: Global Media, Local Labor
  • Michael Curtin and Kevin Sanson
  • 2.    Cybertarian Flexibility—When Prosumers Join the Cognitariat, All That Is Scholarship Melts into Air
  • Toby Miller
  • 3.    Spec World, Craft World, Brand World
  • John T. Caldwell
  • 4.    Film/City: Cinema, Affect, and Immaterial Labor in Urban India
  • Shanti Kumar
  • 5.    The Production of Extras in a Precarious Creative Economy
  • Vicki Mayer
  • 6.    Talent Agenting in the Age of Conglomerates
  • Violaine Roussel
  • 7.    Transnational Crews and Postsocialist Precarity: Globalizing Screen Media Labor in Prague
  • Petr Szczepanik
  • 8.    The Cost of Business: Gender Dynamics of Media Labor in Afghanistan
  • Matt Sienkiewicz
  • 9.    “No One Thinks in Hindi Here”: Language Hierarchies in Bollywood
  • Tejaswini Ganti
  • 10.   Complex Labor Relations in Latin American Television Industries
  • Juan Piñón
  • 11.   Labor in Lagos: Alternative Global Networks
  • Jade Miller
  • 12.   Creative Precarity in the Adult Film Industry
  • Heather Berg and Constance Penley
  • 13.   Strategies for Success? Navigating Hollywood’s “Postracial” Labor Practices
  • Kristen J. Warner
  • 14.   Games Production in Australia: Adapting to Precariousness
  • John Banks and Stuart Cunningham
  • 15.   Redefining Creative Labor: East Asian Comparisons
  • Anthony Fung
  • 16.   Unbundling Precarious Creativity in China: “Knowing-How” and “Knowing-To”
  • Michael Keane
  • 17.   Revolutionary Creative Labor
  • Marwan M. Kraidy
  • 18.   Precarious Diversity: Representation and Demography
  • Herman Gray
  • 19.   The Precarity and Politics of Media Advocacy Work
  • Allison Perlman
  • 20.   Internationalizing Labor Activism: Building Solidarity among Writers’ Guilds
  • Miranda Banks and David Hesmondhalgh
  • References
  • Notes on Contributors
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