I want to pick up where last week’s post left off, because there were a few more titbits from Birth of Biopolitics that will have bearing on what I’m trying to do. After he makes the claim that Marx’s theory of labour power rendered the worker inert, Foucault moves on to talk about the idea … Continue reading Foucault, Arendt, Human Capital, and Consumption.
My boss recently told me that in order to do my job I’d need to take work home with me. This is not the first time this has happened, but this time was different. I work in sales, and what my boss was trying to tell me was that to generate leads I needed to … Continue reading Discipline and Governance in the Neoliberal Workplace
For my first post of 2019, I want to expand on something I noticed back in October, namely, that a number of the male writers I've been reading (and one female writer in particular) make passing but significant mention of the space race when they write about work. Given that this year marks the 50th … Continue reading The Lost Future of the Final Frontier
My alarm used to wake me up. For some reason of late I haven’t needed it. Every morning I am drawn from slumber well ahead of when I’d like to be by the fact I need to be at work. Every morning, despite the fact I don’t work for two days out of seven. I … Continue reading Households of One: Shadow Work in the Epoch of Self-Management
In this post, I want to turn from the idea of home as a refuge from the public to consider the centrality of the ‘household’ to work, perhaps as the first tentative step towards a ‘history of the present’ of work. Remember the aim of a history of the present is not to look for … Continue reading The Fall of the ‘Household’
Last week I wrote about the idea that work is always political. It places (or secures) us in relationships of inequality, and try as we might to place boundaries around it in time (the ‘working week’) and in the law (through the law of contracts, as per Graeber’s argument), it often breaks those boundaries. The … Continue reading Public Sphere, Private Sector
I’ve moved on to the ‘Work’ chapter of Arendt’s Human Condition. It wasn’t as full on as I’d expected; because Labour/Work is a dichotomy, much of the meaning of Work was contained in the Labour chapter. This week I really just want to focus in on just a couple of key insights I’ve gleaned from … Continue reading Digesting Arendt’s ideas on Work