"Broom Stories", writing from Rustom Bharucha from the documentary film on the labor and economic relations embodied in the practice of broom-making in India, to be screened and discussed during the conference

Photo: Broom Stories

The curator of Rethinking Labor and the Creative Economy: Global Performative Perspectives, the Fluid States conference taking place in New Dehli, India, Rustom Bharucha, recommends a booklet featuring the text he had written for the purpose of researching for the documentary film Broom Stories, which will be discussed in the conference. The film was created when professor Bharucha, acting as the director of the Arna Jharna museum in Jodhpur, invited the acclaimed Indian film-maker Navroze Contractor to make a film about the significance of the broom both as India's folkloric and economic signifier.

In line with the topic of labour which will be central for the New Delhi conference, Broom Stories demonstrate the different economic relations which are at work in traditional broom-making in Rajasthan: for many of the most economically deprived families the broom is the only source of income while a small number of trading families establish monopoly in the broom market. However, the film provides an insight in many other aspects of the broom as a cultural artefact: its various material circumstances, beliefs, customs and shamanic practices related to it, as well as the issue of urban squalor and waste. 

The booklet can be found here. (PDF)

Tags: Audiences Spectators Spectatorship in Performance  Class Labor Economy and Performance  Daily Life Daily Rituals and Performance   Performance Studies  Performance Studies in Asia  Race Ethnicity and Performance  

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