On the Floor

Gary Alan Fine

in Authors of the Storm

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2007 | ISBN: 9780226249520
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226249544 | DOI:
On the Floor

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This chapter explores the social contours of the meteorological life. The goal is to situate the occupation within its organizational and social psychological constraints. It argues that the structure, culture, and interactions of operational meteorologists create the conditions in which weather forecasts are produced. In this case, it is the relationship of meteorology to science, to claims about the future, and to the communication of this knowledge that are at issue. The chapter begins with the place and space in which meteorology is done, moving inward to work relations, the links between humans and machines, and labor under conditions of stress and threat. Although meteorologists work for numerous organizations, the focus is on government employees, the authors of official weather information and keepers of the equipment that produces this information.

Keywords: meteorologists; meteorology; weather forecasts; work relations

Chapter.  16025 words. 

Subjects: Sociology

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