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You Have Nothing To Lose But Your Brains on Ten Thousand Posts

This week, we’re joined by labor journalist Sarah Jaffe (@sarahljaffe) to talk about her book Why Work Won’t Love You Back, which is out with Hurst Publishers. We talk about how the 2008 financial crisis permanently changed the structure of work, normalising instability and precariousness and creating foundational struggle myths to justify paying people below minimum wage. We also talk about how these confrontations have played out online, in forms ranging from self-fashioned girlboss culture, to low-paid gig economy workers beginning to unionise and demand the very basic levels of dignity.

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Work Won’t Love You Back on The Professor Is In Podcast

We are delighted to host Sarah Jaffe, the author of the new book, Work Won’t Love You Back: How Our Devotion to Our Work Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted, and Alone (2021). Sarah’s book talks about academics (“Proletarian Professionals”) as one among many groups of laborers in fields that include art, sports, non-profits, teaching, domestic work and more, that try to make laborers substitute “love” for adequate compensation. Sarah brilliantly and energetically breaks down just how, if the neoliberal turn hinges on choice and freedom, then the apparatus for choice is an apparatus for blame. And, as labor conditions got worse, the more you are supposed to perform your “love” for the job. About the academy specifically she observes that just as white women and people of color are scratching their way in, the conditions collapse and a rhetoric of self-sacrifice, austerity and martyrdom is supposed to prevail.  Drawing inspiration from Ettarh’s concept of “vocational awe” (2018),  Karen and Sarah* talk about resisting the coercive nature of uncompensated and unsafe (in the pandemic) work, and how to improve these conditions by replacing individual competition with an investment in our wider community.

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Dear Prudence: The “Undocumented Success” Edition

Prudence is joined this week by Sarah Jaffe, the author of Work Won’t Love You Back and Necessary Trouble, both from Bold Type Books. She’s also the co-host, with Michelle Chen, of Dissent magazine’s Belabored podcast. Prudie and Jaffe tackle letters about how to support your undocumented partner through their job search, what to consider when your partner stays in […]

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Sarah Jaffe. Hustle Culture. Exploitative Bosses. on In Good Company

We discuss everything from the fetishisation of busyness and hustle culture, to the impact of a year spent working from home, and how the pandemic is likely to change workplace structures in years to come. Plus, Sarah has some fascinating thoughts on the gig economy and self-employment, the role that personal brands play in creative careers, and how unionising might just be our way out of many of the workplace ills we discuss in this episode.

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Work Won’t Love You Back on Venus Roots

In this episode, Niki interviews Sarah Jaffe, labor journalist and author. The two discuss Sarah’s new book, Work Won’t Love You Back: How Devotion to Our Jobs Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted and Alone, which offers historical context on the gendered, racialized, and capitalist history impacting workers, families, and what kind of labor society deems as […]

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Work Sucks (I Know) on The Antifada

I joined Sean and Jamie on The Antifada to discuss “Work Won’t Love You Back: How Devotion to Our Jobs Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted, and Alone.” Antifada listeners know “do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life” is a dirty lie told by capitalists. But where did this idea come […]

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Work Won’t Love You Back on the Green and Red Podcast

In our latest episode, we’re excited to speak with labor journalist and author Sarah Jaffe (@sarahljaffe) about her new book “Work Won’t Love You Back: How Devotion to Our Jobs Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted and Alone.” In the episode, we discuss her new book, the evolution of work and the working class and the gender dynamics at play through it. We talk about the “labor of love” myth, work in the education, non-profit, essential care sectors and more. At the end, Sarah quotes W.E.B. Dubois and Bob reads us some Uncle Whiskers.