Work & Use of Space

Fred Pearl (FBP6743@TAM2000.TAMU.EDU)
Wed, 3 Jan 1996 18:23:19 -0600

I'd like to get some comments on the concept of "work". People work
to provide food, shelter, and clothing for themselves and their
dependents. People also work to procreate and raise children. In
fact, it's been argued that people get food , shelter, and clothing
in order to procreate and raise children, but that's another topic.
In the US, people claim to sometimes work for their health. Others
attempt to become wealthy so that they can have more leisure time to
vacation, etc.

The division of labor allows someone to devote more time to certain
aspects of work, such as food gathering, in the expectation that
others will provide shelter or offspring maintenance.

As anthropologists we often study use of space. Living space is
often divided into work areas. Since debris in living space often
accumulates, archaeologists tend to prize abandoned habitations.
Activities at these types of sites perhaps represent only a small
portion of the work required to provide the basic necesseties of

What must we understand of the division of labor and the nature of
work itself to turn the study of use of living space into meaningful
interpretations about human behavior?

Fred Pearl