Date: April 14, 2011
Creator: Giulietti, Michael & Jordan, Ann
Description: This paper discusses research on understanding contemporary professional culture. In the summer of 2010, the author embarked on an applied anthropology project to study the American professional culture of shoe repair. The project was funded by UNT's McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program with guidance by Dr. Ann Jordan of UNT's Department of Anthropology. This qualitative study used the anthropological methods to investigate this rapidly diminishing group and the reasons for its precipitous decline. Participants were recruited either through in-store encounters or from participants in the Shoe Service Institute of America's 2010 convention in Oklahoma City, OK. Twenty-one participants were gathered from shoe repair establishments in DFW and 28 from the convention. The research uncovered the adaptive strategies employed by the shoe repair industry to remain a viable business in a consumption-driven market economy. In a future guaranteed to have fewer resources, shoe repair may see a resurgence as the public begins to value their services once more.
Contributing Partner: UNT Honors College