Desks are central nodes in our modern society. Office employees spend many of their working hours behind desks. School children doing homework sit at them, as do authors writing fiction. Countries are governed and corporations are controlled by people behind desks. Those of us working from the couch do not escape them, since they are remediated in the graphical user interface on our computers. Most research is the product of desk work, but little scholarly attention has been paid to the desks themselves.
This book presents new perspectives on changing ideals and practices surrounding desks and desk work in offices, homes, and in popular culture. The authors represent a broad range of interests and disciplines: business administration, cultural studies, library and information science, literary studies, media and communication studies, media history, and social work. They have all been encouraged to ask new questions about familiar contexts and topics: What is the role of the desk in the daily lives of social workers? What difference does it make that most traders on the financial markets have moved from trading floors to desks where movements and transactions are visible on screens? Why are so many talk show hosts sitting behind desks? And what happens when the desks are left for other arrangements?
The book is edited by Johan Jarlbrink, Umeå University and Charlie Järpvall, Linnaeus University. The book is CC-licensed and can freely be downloaded: