Laura Jarvis-King


I find the practice of work fascinating and I am particularly interested in the uneven and intersectional experiences of work and the power relations practiced through it. My research interests developed during studies for my undergraduate degree and while volunteering with Basis Yorkshire to offer outreach to sex workers in indoor and street markets. My volunteering role involved conducting research for the organisation and this led to a Leeds Social Science Institute funded project to assess service users’ needs and evaluate service provision.

During this time I completed a Masters in Social Research and developed the research questions for my PhD research. In my PhD I employed a qualitative longitudinal methodology to explore the temporal practices of indoor sex workers in regulating work and relationships with clients. The findings demonstrate the ways sex workers and clients cooperate to commodify time, sex and intimacy reflecting growing interdependence between individuals. The findings reveal fluctuating relations of power and contribute to a redefining of the relationship between sex worker and client in recognition of this. I draw on the works of Elias and Marx to explore the practice of work and how this contributes to, and is shaped by, processes of civilising and capitalism. 

Research interests

I am interested in time, temporal practices, work and power. I explore the practice of multi-faceted temporalities in work and its implications for power relations. For this reason, the study of relational processes using a figurational approach has been beneficial and I am interested in exploring the ways a figurational approach can address gendered and classed issues. These interests have led to the study of commodification and consumption processes and the intersection between work and leisure time. 


  • BA Sociology (first class honours)
  • MA Social Research (distinction)