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Future work on Age at Work project

by on April 21, 2017

Katrina and I met up yesterday to plan future work on the Age at Work project so this is a quick round up of our plans.

As Katrina had already blogged recently we are off to the WORK 2017 conference in Turku, Finland in August. We are also delighted to have had papers accepted at a couple of other conferences too.

So the further details are that we will be at:

The British Society of Gerontology in July 2017 presenting our paper “Calendar Girls: Ageing and Aesthetic Labour“. In this paper, we use discursive and visual methods to analyse online news media coverage of the Pirelli calendar.  We use the concept of a discursive event as a temporally and contextually bounded episode (Hardy & Maguire, 2010) that can shed light on a wider societal issue. This offers a way of examining the discursive (often recursive) processes that take place when concepts and identities are represented, how such representations are situated in wider discourses and what is achieved as a result.

The Manchester Ethnography Symposium in August/September 2017 presenting our paper “Facing up to work: a collaborative-visual-auto-ethnography”. This explores our reflexive experience of a collaborative-visual-auto-ethnography undertaken as part of a broader research project examining aesthetic labouring (Entwistle and Wissinger, 2006).  Our specific interest is the trend towards a ‘new natural’ femininity of ageing and its construction as a discourse of successful liberation. We are concerned with how the positive associations between beauty, femininity and youth (Trethewey, 1999) are becoming further refined, such that they must be performed effortlessly as women age, most notably without recourse to make-up. We unpack our own aesthetic labouring as ‘older’ women working not in the entertainment industry per se, but in a role which still requires us to face an audience in the lecture theatre on a regular basis.

It’s going to be a busy summer! But we are excited to be going to these conferences and looking forward not just to presenting our work but hearing about the research of others too. We also have a journal paper in review and a couple of other papers in development.

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