Posts Tagged ‘precarity’

Someone has heard an anonymous would-be museum worker’s plea to colleagues to ‘stop pretending there are jobs when there aren’t’ and asked,

Can someone who has either worked or who is working in the Heritage sector give me some advice and a straight answer – I have just been accepted to start my MA in Sept for Heritage Management and secured a part time voluntary position with National Trust but despite this – I feel there isn’t enough or any at all full time positions available in this sector???

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Finally, the 99% – or 99.67% – of people who cannot get a job in cultural heritage have something to look forward to. They cannot get part-time, entry-level work; they cannot even get school-leaver-level cultural heritage apprenticeships, ‘restoring historical sites and war memorials‘; but if they’re unemployed for long enough – thirty-six months (and, at this rate, they will be) – they will be able to be forced to do it (or other non-‘voluntary work’) full-time unpaid for six months at a time.
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The Sherlock Holmes Museum has jobs, but don’t all rush at once! Really, don’t rush. They have a rather idiosyncratic curator-director, Andrea von Ehrenstein…
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As we (students and workers) have discussed, the cultural heritage profession’s labour problem is an international one. One of our Italian compagni, Alessandro d’Amore (@Alex_OLove), thought up some questions about free archaeology, to introduce the British situation to our Italian colleagues. He’s managed to translate my angry rambling into a chiacchierata [chat].
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Le parole in Archeologia

Ciao Sam e grazie mille per aver accettato di fare questa chiacchierata. Sono molto contento di questa opportunità.

Ciao Alessandro, grazie a te per quest’intervista. Noi attivisti (anti)#freearchaeology siamo d’accordo con voi attivisti di #no18maggio sulla necessità di costruire una consapevolezza ed una solidarietà internazionale per portare avanti le nostre battaglie, perciò quest’occasione è ottima per tutti noi.

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Following on from the last post on why workers and students should strike for higher education, I want to give the University of Portsmouth the short shrift it deserves for making its crowdfunding project’s most precarious worker crowdfund their own salary.
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Radical Education Collective worker and (Slovenian) Moderna Galerija curator Bojana Piškur and Škart Collective worker Djordje Balmazović have conducted a Workers’ Inquiry (which Vanja Savić translated), which has found ‘deteriorating economic circumstances and working conditions’, ‘declining control over the reproduction and distribution of their ideas, knowledge and commodities’, and sometimes violent political pressure (via Art Leaks (@Art_Leaks)).
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Following on from the past two posts, here, I want to highlight how difficult the situation was (or could be) before the crisis. Still, in this post, I also want to consider how the industry is coping now and how established cultural heritage workers advise new (would-be) entrants to the profession.
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Seven months ago, an anonymous would-be museum worker (a graduate of the MA in Museum Studies at the University of Leicester) plaintively appealed for their colleagues to ‘[s]top pretending there are jobs when there aren’t’.
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Yesterday, archaeologists protested in front of the Acropolis (and other civil servants rallied elsewhere); (some) museums ‘closed in protest’ (and other public sector workers used work stoppages to express their discontent). They are maintaining and building resistance against austerity.
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