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As we will see, these structural constraints on our capacity to make our bodies are not confined to the body. They impinge on other areas such as gender, cultural identity and life chances. Post-industrial society and new forms of inequality The development of the post-industrial society – the outcome of new forms of technology and globalisation – has brought new patterns of inequality in its train, which belie the optimistic analyses of the theorists discussed above (see chapter 10). While there has been a feminisation of the workforce, women are concentrated in the service sector and making less money than men, migrant non-English-speaking males have experienced reduced employment, the growth in jobs has been predominantly in part-time rather than full-time positions, and there has been an increase in the numbers of long-term unemployed.

He has shown, in a structuralist way as we have seen above, how bodies are socially determined. But he has also argued for the enabling experience of being part of a web of power relations around which definitions of the body are contested. Our bodily experience is not just a passive one in which a dominant set of societal images are passively experienced, as Bourdieu’s work tends to suggest. Rather, we actively participate in this shaping, as suggested by Foucault in the context of power relationships (Foucault 1980).

Gerth and Mills 1948:261] This process reaches its zenith in Frederick Taylor’s (1911) scientific management, and in time-and-motion studies in which the rational calculation of the 0521818915book 3pp 29/11/2002 14:07 Page 25 Inequality and the Sociology of the Body 25 precise movements that the worker must make to execute a task are measured down to the smallest level (see Gilbreth and Gilbreth 1916). The subjugation of the worker is both psychological and physical, such that the organisation of factory labour itself induces unthinking compliance with no scope for individual resistance.

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