Category Archives: labour

Une Année Sans Lumiere: Encounters before Suez Canal

7 February 2015 15.00 Last night I was invited by the Filipino crew members to one of the crew members’ birthday party. He is an engine -fitter and he will be turning 40 tomorrow.  The crew recreation room unsurprisingly had … Continue reading

Posted in labour, Middle East, militaries, the sea, Travels | Leave a comment

Marsaxlokk-Jabal-Ali: Besotted with the sea

6 February 2015 “For a ship is a bit of terra firma cut off from the main; it is a state in itself; and the captain is its king.” (Melville, White-Jacket – did Conrad plagiarise Melville as I often think … Continue reading

Posted in Allan Sekula, capital accumulation, infrastructure, labour, literature, logistics, Melville, ports, readings, the sea | 2 Comments

Grace: Departing Marsaxlokk

Marsaxlokk-Jabal Ali:  At last at sea 5 February 2015 11.00 Occasionally in the night, the ship bumps against the berth and that is when one remembers that one is not on solid ground. I can’t wait for our ship to … Continue reading

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Sha’bi cosmopolitanisms

There is very little that is original in this post, but I want to put it down anyway, because the affects of this moment are lovely; something that I want to remember when I think about so much that is … Continue reading

Posted in capital accumulation, labour, Middle East, ports, the sea | 2 Comments

Stand-Up Beer Hall

Stand-Up Beer Hall Walter Benjamin Sailors seldom come ashore ; service on the high seas is a holiday by comparison with the labour in harbours, where loading and unloading must often be done day and night. When a gang is then given a … Continue reading

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Train whistles and futures

I am reading two books simultaneously through both of which trains rattle and whistle and snake…  But which in some ways are as different as they can be.  Bill Cronon’s Nature’s Metropolis is a panoramic history of the making of Chicago in the … Continue reading

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Golden Dawn recruited by shipping magnates to break unions

‘[Golden Dawn] created battalions against their political opponents, and then they rented them out, to whoever wanted to rent them,” he told Channel 4 News. In one of the most important cases, a network of businessmen active in the shipping industry … Continue reading

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The blue banana

Last week, huge protests took place in Brussels, with the trade unions reporting some 130,000-150,000 people showing up; and major clashes with the police.  The protests in fact have been going on for some time now.  And in the April … Continue reading

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Block the Boat

One of the most trenchant points that Deb Cowen makes in her superb book, The Deadly Life of Logistics, is that labour mobilisation is a form of “obstruction” that is securitised by shipping companies and states and crushed, precisely because it … Continue reading

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The Bloody Business of War

I discovered something interesting that somehow I had managed to miss all those years ago about the massacre at Karantina… Years ago, I wrote in my first book (which was based on my PhD research) which also included stories about … Continue reading

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