“Craft as class warfare”: Against craft (2018) Cennydd Bowles
Calling yourself a craftsperson affords status. Craft bespeaks skill and autonomy. In the face of creeping automation, a craftsperson is sovereign and irreplaceable. No mere production worker, labour to be organised – she chooses how the work should be done, which of course helps to justify her fees.
Deb Chachra’s piece Why I Am Not a Maker nails the negative connotations that surround making, craft’s central activity: its implied gendering, its conviction that the only valuable human activity is the production of capitalist goods. A shot of undiluted Californian Ideology.
Craft underpins how we dress and even behave. It’s easy to see where this leads: these identity performances become acts of gatekeeping.
Craftspeople generally aren’t renowned multidisciplinarians: sadly, some believe their expertise separates them from less capable people.
Why I Am Not a Maker (2015) Deb Chachra.
Describing oneself as a maker—regardless of what one actually or mostly does—is a way of accruing to oneself the gendered, capitalist benefits of being a person who makes products.
A quote often attributed to Gloria Steinem says: “We’ve begun to raise daughters more like sons… but few have the courage to raise our sons more like our daughters.” Maker culture, with its goal to get everyone access to the traditionally male domain of making, has focused on the first.