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Managing change and constraint in Cardiff Market: understanding the everyday work of market-traders with actor-network theory

Pickering, Jack 2020. Managing change and constraint in Cardiff Market: understanding the everyday work of market-traders with actor-network theory. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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Market Halls or Traditional Retail Markets (TRMs) in the UK are spaces within town and city centres where despite wildly changing economies and urban landscapes, traders have continued to operate across generations, supporting local economies and communities. Despite continuing attempts to account for the economic and social value of these spaces there is a lack of attention to how these spaces operate. This thesis therefore addresses questions focussed on the marketing work conducted by traders, in order to demonstrate how this work is organised, how this work interacts with logistical concerns, and how practices of accommodation and conviviality run alongside the work of market exchange. Answering these questions requires the deployment of key methodological developments from Actor-Network Theory (ANT) in particular work focussing on economic issues as performative. A number of market stalls within Cardiff Market were used as the research site, and an ethnographic approach was adopted which included visual methods. This provided insight into the economic, social and material life of the market, and this thesis groups these findings into three empirical chapters. The first chapter is centred around market stall displays and the arrangements that perform products as economic objects. The second empirical chapter focusses on the management of matter as it moves around markets, and the connection between logistical choreographies and economic performances. The third and final empirical chapter deals with the accommodation and conviviality that the market offers to customers and the public, and how this runs alongside market exchange. Attending to the bodily, non-human and mundane aspects of market life in these ways provides new insight into the performance of the Market Hall as a constrained space oriented towards the provision of basic sustenance and sociality.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Actor-Network Theory, Consumption, Cardiff Market, Market Studies, Accommodation, Conviviality, Affect, Atmosphere, Economic Sociology.
Funders: ESRC
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 June 2020
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2020 15:24

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