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Echoes of austerity

Policy, temporality, and public health in South Africa

Theodore Powers

using the media to bring attention to the impact of the public sector bed closures. On several occasions, Elise forcefully made the point that neo liberal fiscal austerity lay at the root of the health cuts. There was broad agreement with her

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Austerity en route, from Lisbon to Luanda

Ruy Llera Blanes

In response to the editors of this theme section's questioning of austerity's “time and place” (see Powers and Rakopoulos, this issue), in this article I explore two ideas: the political semantics of austerity, and its spatialities, unfolding

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The desire for disinheritance in austerity Greece

Daniel M. Knight

surfaces. And then there are the crippling extra property taxes introduced over the last few years.” As austerity ravishes every aspect of life, the inherited home has become a financial and psychological drain. The irony, Eleni notes, is that by signing

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Bodies of and against austerity

Gendered dispossession, agency and struggles for worth in Portugal

Patrícia Alves de Matos

This article explores the relationships between the body, gendered dispossession and agency under conditions of austerity in Portugal. Drawing from ethnographic research undertaken in 2015 and 2016 in a Portuguese post‐industrial town, this article focuses on the examination of how concrete physical experiences and social anxieties framed working‐class women’s experiences and explanations of the austerity‐led crisis of social reproduction and the ways through which the body was mobilised as a metaphor to make sense of forced and disruptive reconfigurations of the means of livelihood reproduction. It examines how working‐class women resorted to embodied practices, knowledges and moralities as a way of fulfilling provisioning pursuits, to assert rights, entitlements and aspirations. Throughout this article, women’s bodily experiences and embodied practices, knowledges and moralities are the main point of entry from which to reflect on the gendered, contested and negotiated nature of the austerity economic and political project. This article argues for the relevance of addressing the mobilisation of historically embodied legacies of gendered and classed dispossession in the making of ‘actually existing austerity’.

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Crisis, austerity and the normalisation of precarity in Spain – in academia and beyond

Corinne Schwaller

Austerity politics and labour reforms in Spain have intensified the precaritization of employment, both inside and outside academia. Drawing on the cases of two highly educated young women, this paper suggests an analysis of academic precarity that focuses on the intertwining of the academic and the non‐academic world of work in (re)producing precarity. In Spain, a less precarious alternative to precarity in academia is often nonexistent, putting young academics in a situation of blackmail to accept precarious conditions. Consequently, precarity is increasingly normalised. Yet, the process of the normalisation of precarity is understood not only as the growth of precarious jobs and the lack of alternatives, but, more fundamentally, as a shift in the perception of what can be legitimately claimed or expected within employment relations more generally.

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The anthropology of austerity

An introduction

Theodore Powers and Theodoros Rakopoulos

The European sovereign debt crisis and the related processes of austerity have been intensely discussed post-2008. Pensions, livelihoods, and public health have been sacrificed so that debts may be repaid. The resulting social, political, and

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Austerity in Africa

Audit cultures and the weakening of public sector health systems

James Pfeiffer

Béhague 2014 ; Strathern 2000 ) that is in part characterized by managers and accountants usurping the role of actual experts in evaluating and measuring performance. Audit culture became integral to the neoliberal logics of austerity, privatization

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Reversing the world—What austerity does to time and place

Theodoros Rakopoulos

We have been talking a lot about what austerity is —we might benefit from actually asking what austerity does. The definitions of what austerity is might assume much already: seeking for a new definition for a supposedly new reality, a

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It Was Not Meant to Be This Way

An Unfortunate Case of Anglo-Saxon Parochialism?

Tom Frost

making unflattering comparisons with the Soviet Union ( Belien 2006 ). What the financial crisis led to in the U.K. was the election of a Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition Government who embarked upon a radical austerity regime. Made up of deep

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Uneven development, the politics of scale, or global austerity?

Ida Susser

conceptual approach to the idea of austerity, as a neoliberal policy of governance. The articles offer a complex examination of austerity, sometimes talking about what might be characterized as traveling discourses of neoliberalism among state governments and