CAMEo Cuts

CAMEo Cuts is an occasional paper series that showcases reflections on cultural and media economies, written by CAMEo researchers, partners, policy-makers and cultural and media practitioners. Contributions should aim to be short, accessible and engaging, and appealing to the widest academic and non-academic audiences.

We always welcome new ideas and contributors – if you would like to propose an article for inclusion in the Cuts series please email

Each ‘Cut’ is available in pdf format  here– and please do email us if you would like to receive hard copies.

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What is Creative Justice?

Mark Banks

This first issue of CAMEo Cuts summarises observations from Mark Banks’ recent book ‘Creative Justice’ (2017). The aim of the book is to consider the various sociological approaches taken to studying work and education in the cultural industries. It also suggests a new framework for tackling some of the inequalities and injustices occasioned by such work.This summary outlines three concepts – ‘objective respect’, ‘parity of participation’ and ‘reduction of harms’ – which might help us to better focus on the issue of ‘creative justice’, and how best to achieve it.

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Publishing's diversity deficit

Claire Squires

The second CAMEo Cuts examines questions around diversity within the UK’s publishing industry. With a specific focus on BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) participation as publishers, authors, readers, or featuring within books, Claire Squires comments on how UK publishing presents a ‘diversity deficit’. This diversity deficit, despite a raft of diversity initiatives, suggests systemic and institutionalised practices of implicit and explicit discrimination within the literary economy.

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From Careers to Atmospheres

Melissa Gregg

The third issue of CAMEO Cuts examines the changing social relations of time and self-management at work. Melissa Gregg shows how the dispersed organization increasingly relies on technologies and platforms that aim to improve personal productivity and efficiency, but tend to do so at the expense of collectivity. She explores how it might be possible to create new forms of elective association – ‘productive atmospheres’ – based on shared resources and care rather than metrics of individual performance. This forms the argument of her forthcoming book Counterproductive: Time management after the organization (Duke University Press).

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Crafting the Craft Economy

Julia Bennett

In the fourth issue of CAMEo Cuts, Julia Bennett explores the UK craft economy. She begins with a reflection on the rich and diverse history of craft in London, and outlines some of the challenges now being faced by its contemporary makers and designers. In the second part, she outlines the key role played by the Crafts Council in supporting production, education and innovation in the crafts sector, at the local, regional and national level.

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Minding the Cool Gap: New Elites in Blue-Collar Service Work

Richard E. Ocejo

In this edition of CAMEo Cuts, Richard E. Ocejo summarises insights from his recent book Masters of Craft: Old Jobs in the New Urban Economy (Princeton University Press, 2017). Based on an extensive ethnography of traditionally ‘blue-collar’ service trades – such as barbering, distilling, butchering and bar-keeping – his research shows how new cohorts of ‘elite’, middle-class producers and consumers are leading to the creation of new social distinctions and the rise of ‘cool’ service work. This essay outlines some of the social consequences for those who have traditionally occupied manual service trades – the socially disadvantaged and social minorities – when their jobs suddenly become ‘cool’.

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