Hermes on Two Wheels: The Sociology of Bicycle Messengers
Hermes on Two Wheels shows the dynamic world of the bicycle messenger through a sociological lens, based on a five-year participant observation study. Beginning with the experiences of messengers themselves and moving to describe the structural settings of those experiences, the research shows how messengers work within a political-economic system that devalues semi-skilled labor and strips people of emotional fulfillment. The voluntary risk-taking of messengers becomes a means of achieving such emotional fulfillment as well as making a living, while their stylistic expressions pay dividends in cultural scrip rather than money. Through their work, messengers help to reproduce and maintain the structures of society while also constructing a vibrant, rebellious, politicized subculture that has come to represent the new urban hipster, an image continually under threat of co-optation.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
2 Why Does Hermes Fly?
3 Risk Edgework and the Community of Danger
Liminality Anarchy and BikePunk Culture
5 Bicycle Culture Messenger Solidarity and Community Matters
Other editions - View all
Alley Cat Alley Cat races argues authenticity bicycle messengers bike messengers BMEF brakes Burawoy cabbie called capitalist cell phone Championships clients CMWC co-optation collective effervescence competition corporate Critical Mass rides cycling cyclists daily dangerous delivery discussed dispatcher Durkheim economic edgework everyday fakengers feel fixed gear fixed gear bikes gers helmet identity individual Johnny Rotten labor lifestyle messengers liminal living lunatics Lynn Breedlove marginal means messenger community messenger culture messenger industry messenger style Messenger World messenger’s messengers ride Messenguerilla modern O’Hara occupation offer one’s organization packages parked cars participant pedals pedestrians piece-rate system police political posengers produce punk rock punk subculture racecourse racers riders risk risk-taking risky behavior road rage selling sengers Sex Pistols sexism social society solidarity sometimes space streets structure subculture symbol Team Puma things tion track bike trackstand U-lock velodrome wages wear workers York