Sociology and Social Policy: The Moral Economies of Prisoner of War Camps, by Benjamin Manning
Monday 23 March, Room 341, Social Sciences Building
During the 2nd World War, around 100,000 Australian, British and Americans were held in Japanese prisoner of war (POW) camps. Interestingly, given the same structural conditions, and indeed often living side-by-side, each of these national groups responded to the extreme conditions of the camps quite differently. And they did so repeatedly, across hundreds of camps throughout this large region, in a regular and patterned manner. Each of these camps was distinctively Australian, American or British, and the key defining difference between them was the way that they organised their economies. This paper draws on an empirical study of the economies of these POW camps, as a real life ‘quasi experiment’ in economic behaviour to explore the cultural embeddedness of economic activities. The data presents a rich comparative case study for a Polanyian analysis of the relationship between culture, social structure and economic processes.
About the Speaker:
Ben is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Sociology and Social Policy where he is currently researching the history of sociology in Australia . He has previously researched and taught at UNSW and Macquarie University. His primary research interest is economic sociology.
*Please note, start time is 1:00PM*