tommy.jensen@sbs.su.se johan.sandstrom@ltu.se

Tag Archives: culture


Blast (gotta move)


“Blast (gotta move)” is a song about the anxiety of knowing what you have but not what you get, of trying to act collectively but faced with separate negotiations, with not knowing whether or not to afford what the market-conditions dictate, with up-rooting children if leaving Kiruna town is the only viable solution, about having to leave the beautiful scenery appearing outside the kitchen window, about the state withdrawing, leaving movement of […]

Goffman and the Wolfpack


“How long would it take for me to know what’s really going on here?”, I asked. “About three to four months”, the worker answered. I looked at my watch. Twenty hours to go before my flight back to Saskatoon. It takes time to get to know the social codes of a wolfpack. Arriving, staying at and leaving the McArthur River mine site, I kept thinking of the sociological opportunity to study […]

Resistance: A tit for a butt


A small story – but so strong! A girl meets boys, in a boyzone, and their pin-up calendars in the coffee room under ground. What to do, except for complaining to the boys and the organization? Well, after some attempts, this girl decided to have her own calendars at display down the mine. Male, naked, hunks (we assume, haven’t seem them). A sort of resistance. If this is a good […]

Aboriginals and the labour process (part 2)


The way the labour process at MCA is organized spills right into the homes and the communities. The impact seems especially strong in northern, aboriginal communities. The report by the CVMPP from 2006 explicitly deals with the theme “How FIFO [fly-in/fly-out] impact the workers’ family or community”. It says that: “Given that the effects of the rotation system had a limited impact on communities, there were very few recommendations as to […]

Opening black boxes


Please find the second comment from guestblogger Michal Zawadzki: With the popular metaphor developed by Bruno Latour, one could say that neoliberalization of the contemporary academia too often brings down lecture halls in the universities and business schools to the level of ‘black boxes’: discourses closed to criticism, where interpretations of the reality authoritatively imposed by the teacher are reproduced. This situation stays in contradiction to the cultural mission of […]

What is said underground stays…


Is there something special with the comradeship in labour processes in which members perform dangerous tasks, such as in underground mines? We believe so. Ever since Henri Fayol’s famous book on mining and management (at that time called administration) from the early 20th century, the esprit de corps seems to be strong in mining companies. In those times the risks were, of course, higher (many examples from Karl Marx “Capital” are drawn from […]

Mineful art?


On the second floor of Kiruna’s city hall, there’s an exhibition by Kiruna’s association for art (Kiruna Konstgille). The exhibition consists of 100 t-shirts, designed by a variety of local artists (see the video further down, not by us!). The shirts predominantly address the changes that Kiruna is going through and some are relevant to the Kiruna mine and the labour process, or at least we think so. The second […]

Once a citizen of Kiruna, always …


This blog-post is a mixture between a conventional small piece of text and another musical piece. So the idea is text first and then the music. The song is here, though (for lyrics – scroll down). There is a saying in Kiruna that carry the meaning that if you are born and raised in Kiruna it leaves a mark on your character that stays with you forever. The geographical location, the people, […]

Broken memories?


The “body” of the iron ore embedded deep inside the mine stretches towards Kiruna town. The further down the iron ore is extracted the more the city has to be moved. Among the first buildings to go are the city hall and the old railway station, already by 2018. By 2028 the city centre, the church, the hospital, the fire station and a wider range of apartments and independent houses have […]

First interview


This afternoon, Johan met with Curt Persson, historian at Luleå University of Technology and chief of Norrbotten county’s museum. Being from Kiruna, having worked in the mine, and thereafter with culture and history predominantly related to Kiruna and the patron Hjalmar Lundbohm, Curt proved to be a rich source of knowledge. More talks to come we hope! He also gave us a copy of his first book about Lundbohm. In […]