March 3: LOGISTICS III: At Port and Sea

Concluding our three-part logistics unit, we zoom out to examine global logistics and the infrastructures — from ports to software to international standards — that make it possible. We also consider how we might engage with these systems through ethnography and modes of mediation.

Artifact Analysis Presentations: Dalia, Whit, Collin, Eric, Joseph

Lab: Emily will walk us through Supply Chain and Product Investigations

Guest: Georgina Voss, Reader in Systems and Deviance @ London College of Communication; Spring 2020 Visiting Scholar in the New School Department of Anthropology

To be reviewed for today’s class:

  • Miriam Posner, “The Software that Shapes Workers’ Lives,” New Yorker (March 12, 2019) [Posner is working on a book on the topic].
  • Víctor Muñoz Sanz, “Researching Automated Landscapes,” Work, Body, Leisure (Het Nieuwe Instituut / Hatja Cantz Verlag, 2018).
  • What escapes logistical logics? Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, “Some Problems with Scale” in The Mushroom at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins (Princeton University Press, 2015): 36-43.

These next two pieces explore means of representing expansive, entangled logistical systems: 

  • Alberto Toscano and Jeffrey Kinkle, “The Art of Logistics” in in Cartographies of the Absolute (Zero Books, 2015): 190-217.
  • Shannon Mattern, “The Pulse of Global Passage: Listening to Logistics,” in Matthew Hockenberry, Nicole Starosielski, and Susan Zieger, eds., Assembly Codes: The Logistics of Media (Duke University Press, 2020) [please do not circulate!].

Supplemental Resources:

  • Joe Allen, “Studying Logistics,” Jacobin (February 12, 2015).
  • Ashley Carse, Beyond the Big Ditch: Politics, Ecology, and Infrastructure at the Panama Canal (MIT Press, 201).
  • Charmaine Chua, “Sea Shipping and Climate Change: The Political Dimensions of Shipping Infrastructure,” “Sea Shipping and Climate Change,” Architectural League of New York (June 14, 2018) {video: 15:47}.
  • Deborah Cowan, The Deadly Life of Logistics: Mapping Violence in Global Trade (University of Minnesota Press, 2014).
  • Kate Davies and Liam Young, “Unknown Fields,” Architectural Association, London (November 11, 2016) {video: 1:24:26}.
  • Rose George, Deep Sea and Foreign Going: Inside Shipping, the Invisible Industry that Brings You 90 Percent of Everything (2013).
  • Nicky Gregson, Mike Crang, and Constantinos N. Antonopoulos, “Holding Together Logistical Worlds: Friction, Seams, and Circulation in the Emerging ‘Global Warehouse,’” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 35:3 (2019): 381 – 398.
  • Matthew Hockenberry, Supply Studies Syllabus.
  • Margaret Jack and Steven J. Jackson, “Logistics as Care and Control: An Investigation into the UNICEF Supply Division,” CHI 2016, San Jose, CA (2016).
  • Anja Kanngieser, “Tracking and Tracing: Geographies of Logistical Governance and Laboring Bodies,” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 31 (2013): 594-610.
  • Laleh Khalili’s work.
  • Weiqiang Lin, “Catering for Flight: Rethinking Aeromobility as Logistics,” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 36:4 (2018): 683-700.
  • Alexis Madrigal, “Containers” Podcast.
  • Haley Markbreiter, “Deborah Cowen,” Full Stop (April 16, 2017).
  • Sandra Mezzadra & Brett Neilson, “Extraction, Logistics, Finance” in The Politics of Operations: Excavating Contemporary Capitalism (Duke University Press, 2019): 94-132.
  • Miriam Posner, “See No Evil,” Logic 4 (2018).
  • Ned Rossiter, Software, Infrastructure, Labor: A Media Theory of Logistical Nightmares (Routledge, 2016).
  • Allan Sekula, Fish Story (1995).
  • Allan Sekula, “Globalism’s Discontents and the Return of the Sea,” Architectural Association, London, November 10, 1999 {video: 64:07}.
  • Allan Sekula and Noël Burch, Forgotten Space (2010) {film: 112:00}.
  • Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing, Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection (Princeton University Press, 2005).
  • Anna Tsing, “Supply Chains and the Human Condition,” Rethinking Marxism: A Journal of Economics, Culture & Society 21:2 (2009): 148-76.

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