The Dance of Maintenance and the Dynamics of Urban Assemblages: The Daily (Re)Assemblage of Paris Subway Signs

  • Jérôme DenisEmail author
  • David Pontille


Jérôme Denis and David Pontille offer an ethnographic description of maintenance work on Paris’ subway signs that they stage as a paradigmatic case of urban assemblages. Through fine observations of maintenance agents at work, the authors propose to liken the maintenance of the wayfinding system to a dance, which is paced by diverse disassembling and reassembling operations. They show that repair practices perform, through such dynamics, a situated equilibrium between what is made visible and what is made invisible to different audiences, from the riders to the station superintendents, including the workers themselves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre de Sociologie de l’InnovationCentre of Sociology of Innovation, i3, CNRS, Mines ParisTechParisFrance

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