Mar 6 2014

Improving employment protection by means of precarious labor relations? Exploring a Brazilian paradox

March 6, 2014

3:30 PM - 5:30 PM


University Hall / 15th Floor - Room 1501


601 South Morgan, Chicaog, IL

Speaker: Nadya Araujo Guimarães, University of San Paulo
Cosponsor: Latino Cultural Center

Abstract: The rise of emerging markets challenges expectations on employment prospects usually shaped by scholarship produced in the developed countries. Brazil is an intriguing case on this subject since the expansion of formally protected job contracts has been occurring amidst a generalized (international) shortage of occupational opportunities. Besides, it correlates with an increasing commodification on job search and recruitment mechanisms, which echoes the recent reconfigurations of job opportunities mainly for youngest and better-educated workers, crucial protagonists on recent urban unrests in Brazil.  One main question will guide the presentation: what is new on labor flexibility when it takes place in an already flexible, scarcely protected and highly unequal labor market like Brazil? 

About the speaker:
 Nadya Araujo Guimarães is Visiting Researcher at The Lemann Institute for Brazilian Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Chair Professor on Sociology of Work at the University of São Paulo Department of Sociology; CNPq Senior Researcher at the Center for Metropolitan Studies, CEBRAP. Her research in Sociology of Work and Economic Sociology focuses on economic change, firm restructuring and workers trajectories; unemployment, job search and labor market intermediaries; gender and race inequalities in the labor market and workplaces. She holds a PhD from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (1983), and was a postdoctoral fellow with the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, 1993-94). Previously she was a Visiting Professor at Université Paris 8 / Graduate Program in Sociology (2012), Princeton University / Program in Latin American Studies (2007) and is Associate Researcher at Laboratoire Genre Travail Mobilité (France) and Institute for Employment Research/Warwick University (UK). 

This event is part of the series Precarity:  Labor, Violence, Immigration, and the Environment.

All Precarity events are free and open to the public.  Please check weblistings for locations and cosponsorship of specific events.  

Generally defined as a condition of existence without predictability or security, precarity has been a subject of growing interest among humanists and social scientists. As a political term, precarity refers to living and working conditions without any guarantees. Since the 1980s, the term was increasingly used by scholars of labor to describe a variety of forms of flexible exploitation in the neoliberal era. The effect of “precarity” transcends the problematics of employment insecurity, however, as it is clear from recent scholarship on different forms of political, social, and ecological vulnerability. This series of events aims at exposing scholarly and non-scholarly audiences to recent work on the troubling relationship between capitalism and the creation and reproduction of vulnerability, marginality and  suffering under neoliberalism.


Marta Ayala

Date posted

Aug 13, 2018

Date updated

Aug 13, 2018