News

“Labor Without Love” at The Nation

Alyssa Battistoni wrote a long, thoughtful essay for The Nation about Work Won’t Love You Back, Aaron Benanav’s Automation and the Future of Work, the Great Resignation, and capitalist stagnation. She writes:

Jaffe’s vision of post-work politics is more clearly rooted in her descriptions of how workers are organizing today, and she places more faith in the potential of their agency to remake the world. Utopia is present in her writing too, but it emerges concretely, when people act together in ways that challenge the structures of daily life. These moments of possibility can appear in unexpected places. Although they are often associated with autonomous movements like Occupy Wall Street that explicitly seek to disrupt the rhythms of everyday life, Jaffe points out that they also appear in more “organized” forms of action, like teachers’ strikes. We can even generate such moments when we imagine our lives otherwise: “What would you do with your time if you didn’t have to work?” she likes to ask. Such utopian moments won’t abolish capitalism, Jaffe acknowledges. But the projects that generate them give us a glimpse of alternatives and, most important, create the kinds of bonds among people that can drive struggles forward. Political power can only emerge, partially and unevenly, out of actual experiences and relationships—the kinds of relationships of solidarity and, yes, love, that organizing can create and sustain.

Read the whole thing at The Nation