Category Archives: bureacuracy

An interview with Katy Fox-Hodess on Logistics, Labour and State Power

20 August 2020 I was honoured to be interviewed by my amazing colleague and comrade, Dr Katy Fox-Hodess (whose own work is also cited in my book and with whom I worked when we put together Below is the … Continue reading

Posted in bureacuracy, capital accumulation, empire, imperialism & colonialism, environment, finance and insurance, free ports/zones, infrastructure, labour, logistics, Middle East, militaries, seafaring, shipping conditions, transport, war | Leave a comment

Guardian piece about the explosion in Beirut

note: I wouldn’t have used the word “lawless” in the title, as the laws in maritime world are carefully devised to facilitate the accumulation of capital. The sea has always been the site of law — and the law has … Continue reading

Posted in bureacuracy, capital accumulation, environment, infrastructure, logistics, Middle East, political economy, ports, seafaring, shipping conditions, ships | Leave a comment

Logistical Chokepoints

Charmaine Chua writes on the politics of logistical chokepoints: Sped along by transport deregulation and an associated wave of firm competition and consolidation, the containerization of bulk goods now allows a single dockworker to do what it took an army … Continue reading

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The Cargo Cults of USA – Part II

In an extraordinary essay titled “The Smell of Infrastructure,” Bruce Robbins argues that the scaffolding of our lives, the infrastructure that carries shit and coal and lobsters and water and electricity is often made invisible. He has a rousing call … Continue reading

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“no sailor’s card”

Imagine a trans-textual “proletarian” protagonist, one that has travelled the world, gets stuck into adventures aboard ships and on land, and has a laconic easy sarcasm and a way with words.  A kind of working class Marlowe with a better … Continue reading

Posted in bureacuracy, labour, literature, ports, readings, seafaring, shipping conditions, ships, the sea | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Grey Man

On second thought, it is not just the atmosphere of terror in the ship that makes Jahnn’s book so interesting – it is also George Lauffer.  He is what Jahnn fabulously calls “the supercargo” alongside his sealed coffin-shaped secret cargo … Continue reading

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