Geschlechterforschung / Gender Studies





  • Geschlechtersoziologie
  • Arbeitssoziologie
  • Körperarbeit 
  • Ethnografie als Methode

PhD Project: "Doing Beauty (Work)"

In my PhD Project I research practices of 'doing beauty (work)' in labour-relations. I argue that looking at beauty work from a beautician's perspective contributes to amplifying the notion of emotional labour which has become a kind of hegemonic concept in social sciences. In order to describe the ambivalent and nuanced relationships that temporarily and spatially unfold in the beauty salon, I wish to investigate a notion of doing beauty that moves beyond the client-worker dichotomy. As much as beauty work as a practice exceeds the dichotomies of private/public, client/worker, it is doing bodily and socially difference by (un)doing gender, race and class.

By doing ethnographic research in beauty schools, I try to get to the roots of beauty as labour. In so doing within this setting, I hope to shed light on the following questions framing my research and findings:

  • How do beauticians simultaneously create intimacy and manage difference?
  • How do practices of doing beauty work reflect as much as create and contest concepts of beauty?
  • How are intersecting social categories (race, class, gender) created in the doing of beauty work? And how do beautician and client give meaning to and/or contest these categories?
  • How is the beautician's own body materialized as a projection surface for the job they offer?"