For centuries Asian workers provided their own societies and the world with manufactures, spices, rice and many other items. Recruitment, organization and control of sufficient amounts of labour have been essential to keep the Asian economies and societies going. This series aims at looking into these dynamics in depth, acknowledging the wide-ranging variety of social trajectories including labour values and cultural connotations, ecological constraints and different degrees of market orientations. The series aims to be a meeting place between experts from a variety of disciplines; from linguistics to history and social sciences.
The core ambition of the series is to explain different types of labour (share cropping, wage labour, slavery, casual or precarious labour) within a wider cultural, economic and ecological context. Topics such as guilds, circulation of labour, gender stratifications, religious and ethnic identities or modes of labour control are all relevant to this approach. Other topics may be balancing these more structural considerations by departing from the workers’ perspectives and their actions: ranging from collective action and daily resistance to life cycles and their relationship to labour. Geographically the series will cover the space from East Asia to West Asia; from Japan to Egypt.