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Open access paper now out!

by on May 19, 2022

We are delighted that our paper ‘Tyred out: natural ageing and aesthetic labour in Pirelli‚Äôs 2017 calendar is now published online in Gender, Work & Organization and is available open access!


We review how natural ageing is constructed in contemporary media discourse by examining coverage of the 2017 Pirelli calendar.  While highly digitized and provocative representations of youthfulness might be readily associated with this calendar, the 2017 edition featured actors aged 28-71, shot in black and white with limited makeup and apparently no digitization.  As older women we reflexively examine its exposure of how women might age naturally; and discursively unpack tensions surrounding understandings of beauty and empowerment across media coverage.  We suggest the Pirelli calendar is a complex media production, with impact that extends far beyond the product itself, spreading through the economic system and connecting tyres to art in the process.  We progress understandings of aesthetic labour across the lifecourse, offer further development of the beauty and empowerment tensions embedded in the aesthetics of natural ageing and explain how natural ageing facilitates a multi-layered process of binding.

Key Words: Age, Beauty, Aesthetic Labour, Qualitative Research, Digitalisation

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