• Congratulations to P.J. Carlino on an intriguing new article in the Journal of Interior Design:
    Tied to the Desk: The Somatic Experience of Office Work, 1870–1920
    Between 1870 and 1920, American manufacturers designed furniture that re‐shaped the sensorial experience of office work. To help businesses inculcate efficient practice, furniture re‐shaped the posture of employees, programmed their actions, and determined sight lines, soundscapes, and circulation patterns. In the catalogs, textbooks, and trade journals they published, manufacturers gendered and racialized furniture and occupations. By 1920, White‐owned businesses adopted methods built upon standard mass‐produced furniture that affixed White male clerks to their desks and transferred the responsibility for moving information through the office to middle‐class White women. Understanding the historical use of furniture to shape demographics in the twentieth century office opens possibilities and opportunities for new paradigms in workspaces.

     

    • Thanks very much for bringing this interesting article to our attention. I am encouraged to imagine more of this kind of timely, subject-specific publication announcement within our group forum.