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Vitality in Work: Stories from Ras Beirut

Sabra, Lara; Stevenson, Nessim; (2023) Vitality in Work: Stories from Ras Beirut. (Lives and Livelihoods in Turbulent Times Working Paper Series 3). UCL Institute for Global Prosperity: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

This third paper in the Lives and Livelihoods in Turbulent Times series is a photo essay by the Al’a project (Lara Sabra and Nessim Stevenson) that tells the story of three Ras Beirut residents. The first and second papers in the series (by Rahaf Zaher and Zainab Alawieh respectively) both highlighted the struggles that people face and the coping strategies that they use to obtain a livelihood at a time of economic collapse. The present paper continues with the theme of crisis, but it brings to the foreground the acts of loving, living, and expressing one’s sense of self through work. All three participants in the study connect their crafts to something much larger than the craft itself – attachment and belonging to a place, being part of a tradition and a community, being the author of one’s life story. Here, in the stories told by the three participants, tradition meets agency. There is a clear sense that the stories that people tell about fishing, pigeon fancying and sewing, all have a grounding in personal histories, as well as larger family and community histories. Yet at the same time these stories are also expressions of independence and of creating and maintaining one’s place in the world.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Vitality in Work: Stories from Ras Beirut
ISBN-13: 978-1-913041-41-0
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/bartlett/igp/publications-1
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > UCL Institute for Global Prosperity
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10166198
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