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AutodownloadPERSISTENT UNEMPLOYMENT, AUTOMATION, AND THE TRANSCENDENCE OF CAPITALISM

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2015

6:30-9:30 PM

Westside Peace Center

3916 Sepulveda Blvd., near Venice Blvd. (free parking in rear)

Suite 101-102, press #22 at door to get into building

Culver City (LA area)

 

SPEAKERS:

Sarah Mason, former Occupy LA activist

Ali Kiani, Iranian Marxist activist and translator

 

Capitalism today is marked by persistent unemployment, particularly of youth, as well as low-wage labor.  This is not only a local but also a global problem. Although the displacement of human labor by machines is as old as industrial capitalism, it has accelerated and moved into new sectors in recent years.  These issues have been debated widely from Marx’s time, to the Critical Theorists and Marxist-Humanists of the 1950s and 1960s, to today.  Is persistent unemployment due to technological change a further oppression of the working people, or does it offer possibilities for human liberation?  How can both of these issues be connected, in dialectical fashion?  We will explore these issues by examining some pages from Marx’s GRUNDRISSE and CAPITAL, from Herbert Marcuse and Raya Dunayevskaya on automation, and from Paul Mason today.

 

Suggested readings:

Paul Mason, “The End of Capitalism Has Begun,” GUARDIAN, July 17, 2015: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/17/postcapitalism-end-of-capitalism-begun

Raya Dunayevskaya, “The ‘Automaton’ and the Worker,” PHILOSOPHY AND REVOLUTION, pp. 68-77

Herbert Marcuse, on automation, ONE-DIMENSIONAL MAN, pp. 28-37 http://www.marcuse.org/herbert/pubs/64onedim/odm2.html

Karl Marx, Section 5: “The Struggle between Worker and Machine,” in Ch. 15: “Machinery and Large-Scale Industry,” in CAPITAL, Vol. I https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1867-c1/ch15.htm#S5

Karl Marx, on machinery in GRUNDRISSE, Nicolaus translation, pp. 699-713, online here https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1857/grundrisse/ch13.htm and here https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1857/grundrisse/ch14.htm

tech_assembly-automation

Sponsored by the West Coast Chapter, International Marxist-Humanist Organization

More information: arise@internationalmarxisthumanist.org and http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/

Here is URL for meeting for Facebook, Twitter, etc.: http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/events/los-angeles-persistent-unemployment-automation-and-the-transcendence-of-capitalism

Join our Facebook page: “International Marxist-Humanist Organization” https://www.facebook.com/groups/imhorg/

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Ruth Rikowski @ Academia: http://lsbu.academia.edu/RuthRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Ruth Rikowski at Serendipitous Moments: http://ruthrikowskiim.blogspot.co.uk/

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images (17)WHEN WORK IS SEX: BODIES, CHOICE AND CAPITALISM

See: http://www.xtalkproject.net/?p=1224
Radical Politics & Critical Perspectives for the Sex Worker Movement
17 December Conference 2015, London
Register Now – tickets on sale http://www.eventbrite.com/e/when-work-is-sex-bodies-choice-and-capitalism-conference-tickets-18706273969

Sex worker activism in the United Kingdom is once again gathering momentum and energy. From Twitter, to the streets of Soho and regular organising meetings, in student unions and universities, sex worker activists can be heard and our voices are strong. The recent decision by Amnesty International to include sex workers’ perspectives in their policy development has reflected a wider shift that sees the value and necessity of incorporating sex workers’ organisations in decision making about the sex industry. But we know that the demand for decriminalisation is just the beginning, not the end of the struggle to transform our industry. We also know that the growing strength of the sex worker movement is producing a number of conflicts and disparate perspectives on how to achieve radical change and transformation. Within our industry there are different experiences of migration, gender and race that impact our safety and ability to earn a living. We often face the paradox of wanting to critique our workplaces, bosses and work but end up having to defend ourselves from radical feminist representations of our experiences and the claim that we are victims in need of rescue. The energy and time it takes fighting to be heard means we often don’t have the space to focus on the very institution we want to bring down: that of capitalist work itself.

When Work is Sex: Bodies, Choice and Capitalism is an opportunity for sex workers, activists and academics who are interested in the politics of work and sex to come together to take stock of the sex worker movement and to consolidate and to strengthen the multiple campaigns, plans and struggles that are already in motion. It will also be a space to debate and discuss some of the different politics and perspectives that have developed in the sex worker movement. We are interesting in asking questions and debating what the goals and orientation of the sex worker rights movement should be. What should a union for sex workers look like? How useful (or limited) is the language of rights? What demands are being made and which should be being made? How can we ‘scale up’ our activities? How can we develop a more robust anti-capitalist orientation? The conference is open to those who are interested in where the sex worker led movement has come from, where it is going and how we can develop a more radical politics of sex work.

The conference is organised into three streams Bodies, Choice and Business. We would like to invite participation in the form of papers, panels and workshops framed around the following themes:

Bodies – How can we address questions and experiences of violence, safety and sexual violence? What does the politics of safe(r) spaces and victimhood mean within the sex worker movement? What are the connections between the criminalisation of (some) bodies and (some) violence? How can we develop a radical concept of autonomy and how could a feminist politics intersect with these concepts?
Choice – How do the discourses of choice, work and identity structure the politics of sex work. How can we approach the politics of consent and notions of freedom? How useful is the claim that sex work is ‘my choice’. What is the role of the entrepreneur in late capitalism and in the sex industry? How can we move beyond the claim for rights and towards a more radical anti-capitalist position?
Business – What are we selling? What are they buying? What does a politics of reproduction bring to the discussion of sex work? How does sex work organise gender and reproductive labour? How has migration changed the conditions of the sex industry? How can we understand our relations of exploitation and complicated class positions in the sex industry?

Submissions for conference papers, panels and workshops are due November 1st. Please send submissions to dec17conf@gmail.com with your name (or working name if you prefer), title, short (300 words max) description and any access or equipment needs you have.

This conference has been organised by the x:talk project and is supported by the Sex Worker Open University, SCOT-PEP and STRASS (France). Email dec17conf@gmail.com to add your organisation’s names to the list of supporters.

On December 17 – the International Day to End Violence against Sex Workers we renew our commitment to solidarity. The majority of violence against sex workers is not just violence against sex works — it’s also violence against transwomen, against women of color, against drug users and against migrants. We cannot end the marginalization and victimization of sex workers without also fighting transphobia, racism, stigma and the criminalization of drug use.

First Published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/when-work-is-sex-dec-17-conference-call-for-participation

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Ruth Rikowski @ Academia: http://lsbu.academia.edu/RuthRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Ruth Rikowski at Serendipitous Moments: http://ruthrikowskiim.blogspot.co.uk/

Working to Death

Working to Death

WORKING US TO DEATH: ALIENATED LABOR UNDER CAPITALISM

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2015

6:30-9:30 PM

Westside Peace Center

3916 Sepulveda Blvd., near Venice Blvd. (free parking in rear)

Suite 101-102, press #22 at door to get into building

Culver City (LA area)

 

SPEAKERS:

Stephan Hammel, Marxist musicologist

Kevin Anderson, author of Marx at the Margins

Mansoor M., Iranian computer engineer and cultural worker

 

Since the 19th century, capitalism has radically transformed work, making the worker, in Marx’s language, a mere “appendage to the machine.”  This deepened under 20th century assembly lines and has been extended globally today, as seen in places like China or Bangladesh.  In recent years, alienated labor has begun to spread from the factory floor into white collar and professional work in the U.S. and other developed countries. All of this is fueled by fear in a system wherein ever-larger sectors of the population face permanent unemployment and precarity.

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Suggested readings:

Recent New York Times article on Amazon (white collar and professional workers) http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/16/technology/inside-amazon-wrestling-big-ideas-in-a-bruising-workplace.html?_r=0

New York Times article on suicides of Apple workers in China from 2012 (factory workers) http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/26/business/ieconomy-apples-ipad-and-the-human-costs-for-workers-in-china.html

Marx: Alienated (Estranged) Labor essay from 1844: https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1844/manuscripts/labour.htm

Marx: Fetishism section from Capital https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1867-c1/ch01.htm#S4

download (11)

Sponsored by the West Coast Chapter, International Marxist-Humanist Organization

More information: arise@internationalmarxisthumanist.org

http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/

Here is URL for meeting for Facebook, Twitter, etc.: http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/events/los-angeles-working-us-to-death-alienated-labor-under-capitalism

Join our Facebook page: “International Marxist-Humanist Organization” https://www.facebook.com/groups/imhorg/

download (6)

***END***

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Ruth Rikowski @ Academia: http://lsbu.academia.edu/RuthRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Ruth Rikowski at Serendipitous Moments: http://ruthrikowskiim.blogspot.co.uk/

Work

Work

WORK AND PEER PRODUCTION

CALL FOR PAPERS

Journal of Peer Production

Work and Peer Production
Editors: Phoebe Moore (Middlesex University London), Mathieu O’Neil (University of Canberra), Stefano Zacchiroli (University Paris Diderot)

The rise in the usage and delivery capacity of the Internet in the 1990s has led to the development of massively distributed online projects where self-governing volunteers collaboratively produce public goods. Notable examples include Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) projects such as Debian and GNOME, as well as the Wikipedia encyclopedia. These distributed practices have been characterised as peer production, crowdsourcing, mass customization, social production, co-configurative work, playbour, user-generated content, wikinomics, open innovation, participatory culture, produsage, and the wisdom of the crowd, amongst other terms. In peer production, labour is communal and outputs are orientated towards the further e xpansion of the commons, an ecology of production that aims to defy and resist the hierarchies and rules of ownership that drive productive models within capitalism (Moore, 2011); while the commons, recursively, are the chief resource in this mode of production (Söderberg & O’Neil, 2014).

Peer projects are ‘ethical’ as participation is primarily motivated by self-fulfillment and validated by a community of peers, rather than by earning wages. Their governance is ‘modular’, understood in a design sense (decomposable blocks sharing a common interface), but also in political-economy terms: participants oppose restricted ownership and control by individually socializing their works into commons. Conflicting interpretations of their societal impact have been articulated (O’Neil, 2015). Skeptics view the abjuration of exclusive property rights over the goods they produce as irrelevant, and ethical-modular projects as increasing w orker exploitation: participants’ passionate labour occurs at the expense of less fortunate others, who do not have the disposable income, cultural capital, or family support to engage in unpaid labour (Moore & Taylor, 2009; Huws, 2013). In contrast, reformists, often hailing from a management perspective, suggest that the co-optation of communal labour by firms will improve business practices and society (Arvidsson, 2008; Demil et al., 2015). Finally activists celebrate the abjuration of exclusive property rights, and present ethical-modular projects as key actors in a historical process leading to the supersession of capitalism and hierarchy (Kostakis & Bauwens, 2014).

This last perspective raises a central challenge, which is the avoidance of purely utopian thinking. In other words, how can commons-based peer production reach deeply into daily life? How can ‘already existing non-capitalist economic processes’ be strengthened, ‘new no n-capitalist enterprises’ be built, and ‘communal subjects’ be established (Gibson-Graham, 2003: 157)? An increasingly large free public goods and services sector could well cohabit in a plural economy with employment in cooperatives, paid independent work, and the wage-earning of the commercial sector. However analysis of peer production typically eschews mundane considerations such as living wages, benefits, job security, working conditions, work-induced medical conditions, and debates on labour organization. How can peer production operate as a sustainable practice enabling people to live, if labour and work issues are not formally addressed?

To advance this agenda, the tenth issue of the Journal of Peer Production, titled Peer Production and Work, calls for papers in two linked areas:

*Peer production in a paid work society*
Nowadays firms attempt to monetize crowdsourced labour. The paradigmatic example is Amazon’s Mechanical Turk labourers (popularly known as ‘Turkers’, ‘cloud workers’ or ‘click workers’) who accomplish micro-tasks such as tagging and labeling images, transcribing audio or video recordings, and categorizing products. This extreme modularization of work results in their status being that of independent contractors rather than employees with rights, necessitating novel means of protection and redress (Irani & Silberman, 2013). The so-called ‘sharing economy’ also uses peer production methods, such as the self-selection of modular and granular tasks, to extract ever-more value from the labour of volunteer ‘prosumers’ (Frayssé & O’Neil, 2015). Capitalist firms are also increasingly engaging with ethical-modular organizations, in some cases paying wages to participants. Such labour is thus both ‘alienated’, or sold, and ‘communal’, as workers freely cooperate to produce commons. Do traditional categories such as exploitation and alienation still apply?
Topics may include, but are not limited to:

* Peer production and the global political economy
* Peer production and the rise of precarious work
* Peer workers and possibilities for worker organisation
* Does the autonomy of peer workers cause conflict in firms, and how is it resolved?
* What strategies do firms adopt to co-opt peer production (e.g., ‘hackhathons’)?
* Do tensions around property rights emerge?
* Subjectivity in peer production
* Peer production and intellectual property, coded work

*Paid work in peer production projects*
How does paid labour affect ethical P2P projects? Mansell and Berdou (2010) argue that firms supporting the work of programmers who contribute to volunteer projects, to the commons, will not affect the ‘cooperative spirit’ of projects; nor can this support prevent the results of labour from being socialized into commons. Is this always the case?
Topics may include, but are not limited to:
* How do peer projects deal with the presence of paid or waged labour?
* Is this topic discussed within peer production projects? In what way?
* What benefits do paid or waged workers enjoy in peer projects?
* How does paid labour affect peer production projects?

*Timeline*
300-500 word abstract due: 30 July 2015
Notification to authors: 30 August 2015
Submission of full paper: 31 December 2015
Reviews to authors: 15 February 2016
Revised papers: 30 April 2016
Signals due: 30 May 2016
Issue release: June/⁠July 2016

*Submission guidelines*
Submission abstracts of 300-500 words are due by July 30, 2015 and should be sent to work@peerproduction.net

All peer reviewed papers will be reviewed according to Journal of Peer Production guidelines. See http://peerproduction.net/peer-review/process/
Full papers and materials are due by December 31, 2015 for r eview.
Peer reviewed papers should be around 8,000 words; personal testimonies or ‘tales of toil’ in the Processed World tradition should be up to 4,000 words.

*References*
Arvidsson, A. (2008). The ethical economy of consumer coproduction. Journal of Macromarketing, 8, 326-338.

Demil, B., Lecoq. X. & Warnier, E. (2015). The capabilities of bazaar governance: Investigating the advantage of business models based on open communities. Journal of Organizational Change Management, in press.

Frayssé, O. & O’Neil, M. (2015) Digital labour and prosumer capitalism: The US matrix. Basingstoke: Palgrave, in press.

Gibson-Graham, J.K. (2003). Enabling ethical economies: Cooperativism and class. Critical Sociology, 29, 123-164.

Huws, U. (2013). The underpinnings of class in the digital age: Living, labour and value. Socialist Register, 50, 80-107.

Irani, L. & Silberman, M. (2013). Turkopticon: Interrupting worker invisibility in Amazon Mechanical Turk. Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems.

Kostakis, V. & Bauwens, M. (2014) Network society and future scenarios for a collaborative economy. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

Mansell, R. & Berdou, E. (2010). Political economy, the internet and FL/OSS development. In Hunsinger, J., Allen, M. & Klastrup, L. (Eds.) International handbook of Internet research (pp. 341-362). Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Springer.

Moore, P. (2011). Subjectivity in the ecologies of P2P Production. The Journal of Fibreculture FCJ-119. Online.

Moore, P. & Taylor, P. A. (2009). Exploitation of the self in community-based software production: Workers’ freedoms or firm foundations? Capital & Class, 99-117.

O’Neil, M. (2015). Labour out of control: The political economy of capitalist and ethical organizations. Organization Studies, 1-21.

Söderberg, J. & O’Neil, M. (2014). ‘Introduction’. Book of Peer Production (pp. 2-3). Göteborg: NSU Press.

****

First Published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/cfp-journal-of-peer-production-work-and-peer-production

 

***END***

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Outland

Outland

CORPORATE CARE: MIGRANT LABOUR AND THE CARE INDUSTRY IN TIMES OF (NON) CRISIS

CALL FOR PAPERS

Corporate Care: Migrant labour and the care industry in times of (non) crisis

A one-day conference at Goldsmiths College, New Cross, London, 29 October 2015

Deadline: June 12, 2015

Though unsurprisingly hitting the low-income and unemployed harder than ever, the 2007-2011 Global Economic Crisis and subsequent politics of austerity have also revealed the emergence of new and unexpected trends in the West: in the immediate aftermath of the crisis, both non-migrant and migrant women in numerous Western countries were less affected than men in terms of jobs losses, though their working conditions might have not improved. Subsequent austerity policies, on the other hand, seem to have disadvantaged women in terms of working conditions, though they also appear to have reinforced their commitment to paid work (Karamessini and Rubery, ed., 2013; Farris, 2015).

The intertwined fate of non-migrant and migrant women during and after the crisis is due to their position vis-à-vis care, or social reproduction. The assumption that care is a “woman’s job” remains firmly in place, while public state care provision continues to shrink. But while non-migrant women’s rate of participation in the workforce means that they do less unpaid care work in comparison to previous periods, migrant women from ‘post-socialist’ countries and the Global South take on the bulk of the social reproductive tasks in paid form in the booming care industry.

But what is the care industry? How did the crisis change its configuration?

Studies conducted across Europe and the West in the last ten years show that the care industry was not negatively affected by the crisis. On the contrary, the demand for care and domestic service has grown rather than decreased. Moreover, a process of polarization appears to be impacting upon migrant workers employed in the care industry: on the one hand, a proliferation of domestic and care placement agencies as well as so-called ‘non-profit’ organisations (particularly in Southern Europe) is increasingly meeting the growing demand for carers and housekeepers by individual households. Effectively functioning as corporations, many of these organisations are making enormous profits out of mediating for, or directly exploiting, the hugely needed work of migrants in the care sector. On the other hand, anti-immigration policies at the national level and the refusal of numerous states to issue visas for care and domestic workers (particularly during the first years of the crisis) have pushed migrants working in this sector into the underground. But rather than being discouraged to employ migrants, more and more families in fact rely upon “word of mouth” to hire them as carers and housekeepers, as they remain the most cost-effective solution for their caring needs. Yet even in the underground, illegal agencies and organisations profiting from this flourishing industry begin to emerge.

With the crisis and austerity politics in the background, this one day conference aims to analyse this new set of dynamics by focusing upon the care industry, the emergence of corporate care and (female) migrant labour in particular.

While the employment of migrant women in the care industry has been widely studied, the impact of the recent crisis and austerity politics on female migrant labour in the care sector and the boom of care placement agencies have remained largely under-scrutinized.

This conference thus aims to fill a gap in this field of studies by seeking papers that address the following questions in particular:

  • How does the increasing presence of corporations and also non-profit organisations in the care industry in a period of crisis and austerity affect the sector?
  • How does the profitability of care impact upon our understanding of social reproduction theory in particular?
  • How do care and domestic placement agencies change conceptions and cultures of care and domestic work?
  • How have the crisis and austerity politics transformed the working conditions of migrants in the care sector in different countries?

Abstracts should be 300 words long and clearly state the question they address. Preference will be given to papers that seek to combine theoretical and empirical work.

Deadline for submission is June 12, 2015. Please send abstracts and any inquiries to s.farris@gold.ac.uk

First Published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/cfp-corporate-care.-migrant-labour-and-the-care-industry-in-times-of-non-crisis.-goldsmiths-college-29-october-2015

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

The Failure of Capitalism

The Failure of Capitalism

CYBER-PROLETARIAT: GLOBAL LABOUR IN THE DIGITAL VORTEX

NEW FROM PLUTO PRESS:

Cyber-Proletariat: Global Labour in the Digital Vortex

By Nick Dyer-Witheford

http://bit.ly/1AeNq5z

—————–

Praise for CYBER-PROLETARIAT:

‘Cyber-Proletariat tracks the eddies and flows of the perfect storm that is contemporary capitalism. This panoramic work reveals the relentless force of material destruction and brutal violence concealed by the sleek surfaces of digital culture’ – Benjamin Noys, Professor of Critical Theory, University of Chichester and author of Malign Velocities: Accelerationism and Capitalism

—————–

Coltan mines in the Congo; electronics factories in China; devastated neighbourhoods in Detroit. Cyber-Proletariat shows us the dark-side of the information revolution; an unsparing analysis of class power and computerisation.

Nick Dyer-Witheford reveals how technology facilitates growing polarisation between wealthy elites and precarious workers. He reveals the class domination behind everything from expanding online surveillance to intensifying robotisation. At the same time he looks at possibilities for information technology within radical movements; contemporary struggles are cast in the blue glow of the computer screen.

Cyber-Proletariat brings heterodox Marxist analysis to bear on modern technological developments. The result will be indispensable to social theorists and hacktivists alike and essential reading for anyone who wants to understand how Silicon Valley shapes the way we live today.

—————–

ON THE PLUTO BLOG: http://bit.ly/1HsH55Z

READ THE BOOK ONLINE: http://bit.ly/1K0fr0B

—————–

Want an inspection copy for your course? Visit www.plutobooks.com/lecturers.asp for more details.

Want a book for review? Email our publicity team at publicity@plutobooks.com.

Sign up to our newsletter for special offers, news and events: www.plutobooks.com/subscribe.asp.

Follow us online:

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—————–

Paperback | 9780745334738 | £18.99 / $30 / €23
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Even Bigger Data

Even Bigger Data

 

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

No Future

No Future

WHY IS THERE UNEMPLOYMENT?

WHY IS THERE UNEMPLOYMENT?

WHY ARE THOSE WITH JOBS OVERWORKED?

WHAT CAN WE DO?

SUNDAY, MAY 3, 2015

7:00-10:00 PM

Westside Peace Center

3916 Sepulveda Blvd., near Venice Blvd. (free parking in rear)

Suite 101-102, press #22 at door to get into building

Culver City (LA area)

 

SPEAKERS:

Ali Kiani, Iranian Marxist activist and translator

Sarah Mason, former Occupy LA activist

 

Questions to be addressed:

**Why is the U.S. economy characterized by persistent unemployment for tens of millions? Does it stem from the downturn since 2008, from neoliberal capitalism, or is it a permanent feature of capitalism itself?

**Why at the same time are tens of millions required to work long hours, often far beyond the 40-hour-week?  Why has the 40-hour standard, in place for 80 years, not been reduced?

**Are more jobs the solution to unemployment, or does the whole concept of work and wage labor need to be questioned?

 

Those seeking more background before the meeting might consult these readings:

Marx, “The Progressive Production of a Relative Surplus Population or Industrial Reserve Army,” in CAPITAL, Vol. 1 (14 pp.)

Marx, “The Struggle for a Normal Working Day,” in CAPITAL, Vol. 1, Ch. 10, section 6 (24 pp.)

Peter Frase, “Post-Work: A Guide for the Perplexed,” in JACOBIN 2-25-13 (3 pp.)

 

Sponsored by the West Coast Chapter, International Marxist-Humanist Organization

More information: arise@internationalmarxisthumanist.org

http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/

Here is URL for meeting for Facebook, Twitter, etc. http://www.internationalmarxisthumanist.org/events/los-angeles-why-is-there-unemployment-why-are-those-with-jobs-overworked-what-can-we-do

Join our Facebook page: “International Marxist-Humanist Organization” https://www.facebook.com/groups/imhorg/

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski

FUEL FOR THE LIVING FIRE: LABOUR-POWER!

My article Fuel for the Living Fire: Labour-Power! is now available at Academia.

It can be viewed at: https://www.academia.edu/11923648/Fuel_for_the_Living_Fire_Labour-Power_

It is Chapter 7 in The Labour Debate: An Investigation into the Theory and Reality of Capitalist Work, edited by Ana C. Dinerstein and Micheal Neary, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2002, pp.179-202.

Glenn Rikowski

**END**

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Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Living Fire

Living Fire

Alien Life

Alien Life

RE-ENGINEERING THE FUTURE?

Tate Britain, London

Friday 10 April 2015, 19.30 – 20.30

FREE

All discussions will be held in the Clore Auditorium at Tate Britain 19.30–20.30.

Attendance is free but tickets will be given out on a first-come-first-served basis from 18.00 in the Clore Foyer

Part of the series Speculative Tate

This panel brings together three leading political thinkers, Nina Power, Nick Srnicek (via Skype), Alex Williams and chaired by James Trafford, to consider the ways in which we might think and construct a “future”.

This is surely a task that is an absolute necessity, given, for example, the breakdown of the planetary climate system; increasing wealth disparity, rentier economics; precarity and automation of labour; state bailouts. But at the same time, the future itself seems almost impossible, with the ultimate channeling of thought and action under the axiom of Capitalist Realism: there is no alternative.

The issue raises further concerns regarding “whose” future is under construction? We may rightly ask, for example, if anything can be retrieved from the narrative of “progress” given its alliance with Modernism and Neo-liberalism. On the other hand, the relinquishment of “progress” by the left has arguably left us in a political bind, wherein we have little way of constructing an alternative form of modernisation in a context where increasingly the transformation and automation of labour requires us to think precisely this.

The panel will discuss: Post-work society, automation and Universal Basic Income; How or if it is possible to “think” the future in a democratic way; Whether or not it is possible to restructure the left along the lines of a radical form of modernisation.

Biographies

Nina Power is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Roehampton and Tutor in Critical Writing in Art and Design at the Royal College of Art. She has written widely on European philosophy and politics.

Nick Srnicek is a political theorist. He is the author of Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics and the forthcoming Inventing the Future: Folk Politics and the Struggle for Postcapitalism (Verso 2015) (both with Alex Williams), and Postcapitalist Technologies (Polity 2016).

Alex Williams is a political theorist, working on the relationship between social complexity and political hegemony. With Nick Srnicek he is the author of the Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics and the forthcoming Inventing the Future (Verso 2015).

See: http://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-britain/talks-and-lectures/re-engineering-future

**END**

download‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

 

Stuff

Stuff

WORKING WORLDS

Call for Papers:

Working Worlds explores the world-making capacities of the work of art. The conference seeks to reimagine the artwork as a space of compossibility in which multiple worlds, both real and potential, past and future, coexist. The present conference invites papers to intermix different scales of worlds, from the world in miniature to a world in collapse. Recent debates in art history have emphasised the artwork’s potential to represent global phenomena: conflict, ecological catastrophe and the flows of capital. Lost in these discussions is the fact that the artwork may also be understood as a world in and of itself. The artwork is of this world, but it is not reducible to it. From the sculptural practice of Camille Henrot to the performances of Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, attention paid to the particularity of the artwork reveals its potential to actualize speculative fictions in which worlds are formed and collapsed. Though the period addressed by the conference finds its beginnings with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, an event that for many heralds the era of globalisation, Working Worlds also invites papers that draw lines of continuity between the modern and the post-modern, and thereby seek to challenge existing narratives that draw too firm a line between these historical periods.

 

Working Worlds proposes three panels with topics not exclusively related to:

  1. The work of the artwork / worldmaking / the artwork as theory
  2. Artistic labour / digital labor / artwork as situation / artwork as event / cognitive mapping
  3. Institution / artworld / capitalism as global process

 

Speakers should be prepared to present papers for 25 min followed by a discussion. Please send 300 word abstracts by February 26th to: Andrew Witt and Rye Holmboe, workingworlds2015@gmail.com The conference will be held on the 16th of May, 2015.

First Published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/call-for-papers-working-worlds-may-16-2015-university-college-london

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

 

Time and Space in the Social Universe of Capital’ – by Michael Neary and Glenn Rikowski, now at Academia: http://www.academia.edu/10545768/Time_and_Speed_in_the_Social_Universe_of_Capital

Co-operationCO-OPERATIVES AND THE WORLD OF WORK

Call for papers

ICA-ILO International Research Conference

Cooperatives and the World of Work

Antalya, Turkey

9-10 November, 2015

 

Abstracts: February 15, 2015

Notification of acceptance: April 15, 2015

Early bird registration: September 15, 2015

 

Conference Objectives

The International Co-operative Alliance Committee on Cooperative Research (ICA CCR) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) will host a research conference on 9-10 November 2015 in Antalya, Turkey. The conference will bring together researchers, students, practitioners, advocates, policy makers and representatives of employers’ and workers’ organizations working in areas of cooperative enterprises and social and solidarity economy organizations, as well as labour research and themes related to the world of work.

The ILO/ICA research conference will be an opportunity, among others, to:

  • Bring cooperative researchers and labour researchers together around the themes of world of work;
  • Raise visibility and interest in research on decent work (job creation, rights at work, social protection, social dialogue) in the world of cooperatives, to encourage more systematic and effective engagement with world of work issues;
  • Raise visibility and interest in qualitative and quantitative research on cooperative enterprises among labour economists and researchers; and
  • Establish contacts and potentially a research network around cooperatives and the world of work.

 

Conference Background

The crisis in the world of work, which ranges from unemployment to unfairness and inequality in the labour market, the widespread lack of social protection and the impact of climate change along with food and fuel crises, has generated growing interest of policy makers in the cooperative enterprise model. Across continents, cooperative enterprises have been established to confront the crises and have grown both in membership and return at such times.

Today when cooperative principles are put into action, they continue to show their relevance and value [1]. Worker cooperatives are emerging as a way to rescue failing enterprises, and legislation is often following to catch up with the economic realities in a number of countries. Consumer and producer cooperatives as well perform functions that improve the standard of living of workers and they are often cited as “best places to work”.

The cooperative form of enterprise and organization is growing and fulfilling a range of social, economic and environmental functions and responding to the needs of their members. They are increasingly being established among vulnerable categories of workers such as migrant workers, people with disabilities, and workers in the informal economy (for example, street vendors, waste pickers, home-based, domestic, construction and transport workers); as well as in innovative sectors, including social care cooperatives (for elderly, disabled and child care), tourism cooperatives, and renewable energy production and distribution cooperatives.

As global attention focuses on the challenges of sustainable development, from the world of work perspective, cooperative enterprises are well-placed to be leaders to advance the decent work dimension of a just transition. Nevertheless, although their role as key building blocks for a jobs-oriented recovery strategy may seem obvious, evidence-based policy in that regard requires further research and statistics to track the quantity and quality of the jobs created [2].

The cooperative movement must be in a position to articulate and measure the forms of value that cooperatives produce in leveraging more and better jobs, so key questions are:

  • What impact do the ownership structure and the active participation of workers and members in cooperatives have on the productivity of such enterprises?
  • What impact does broadening ownership have on job quality and working conditions?
  • What is the record of cooperatives on labour compliance?
  • What is the qualitative and quantitative contribution of cooperative enterprises to advancing full and productive employment and decent work, in particular for vulnerable groups?

 

Message from Guy Ryder, ILO Director-General, on International Cooperative Day 2013

http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/who-we-are/ilo-director-general/statements-and-speeches/WCMS_216859/lang–en/index.htm

As global attention focuses on the challenges of sustainable development, from the world of work perspective, cooperative enterprises are well-placed to be leaders to advance the decent work dimension of a just transition. Nevertheless, although their role as key building blocks for a jobs-oriented recovery strategy may seem obvious, evidence-based policy in that regard requires further research and statistics to track the quantity and quality of the jobs created.

The cooperative movement must be in a position to articulate and measure the forms of value that cooperatives produce in leveraging more and better jobs, and in this respect crucial issues are:

  • What impact do the ownership structure and the active participation of workers and members in cooperatives have on the productivity of such enterprises?
  • What impact does broadening ownership have on job quality and working conditions?
  • What is the record of cooperatives on labour compliance?
  • What is the qualitative and quantitative contribution of cooperative enterprises to advancing full and productive employment and decent work, in particular for vulnerable groups?

 

Notes:

[1]. Message from Guy Ryder, ILO Director-General, on International Cooperative Day 2013

http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/who-we-are/ilo-director-general/statements-and-speeches/WCMS_216859/lang–en/index.htm

[2]. Guy Ryder’s opening remarks to the UNRISD Conference on Social and Solidarity Economy held in May 2013 in Geneva. http://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/who-we-are/ilo-director-general/statements-and-speeches/WCMS_212653/lang–en/index.htm

 

Conference Topics

The conference will address, but is not limited to, the following research areas:

  • Cooperatives and labour law compliance
  • Cooperatives and trade unions
  • Cooperatives and employers’ organizations
  • Cooperatives and employment creation
  • Cooperatives and child labour
  • Cooperatives and forced labour
  • Cooperatives and formalizing the workers in the informal economy
  • Cooperatives and decent work in the rural economy
  • Cooperatives and youth employment
  • Cooperatives on women’s economic empowerment and gender equality
  • Cooperatives and labour statistics
  • Cooperatives and codes of conduct
  • Cooperatives and labour legislation and policies
  • Cooperatives and productivity
  • Employment in cooperatives across value chains
  • Cooperatives and social protection
  • Cooperatives and social dialogue
  • Innovation in cooperatives (social, organizational and technical)
  • Enterprise restructuring and worker cooperatives
  • Cooperatives and labour in socialist and transition economies
  • Theoretical advancements on cooperatives and labour issues
  • Comparative performance of worker cooperatives and (non-cooperative) employee owned firms
  • Cooperatives and human development and education/training

 

Call for Papers

We invite practitioners, researchers, and policy makers in the cooperative and social and solidarity economy to submit an abstract no longer than 300 words on the listed topics, or other topics related to cooperatives and the world of work. Proposals for presentations or for panels (up to six participants) and sessions (three or four presenters of research papers on a common theme) are welcome.

The abstracts should be submitted by email to: coop@ilo.org no later than February 15, 2015.

The email communications should indicate ICAILO2015 and the family name of the corresponding author in the subject area (eg. ICA-ILO2015 – Smith).

The message should indicate clearly the type of proposal – paper abstract, panel, or a session. A panel or session proposal needs to include names of all presenters, as well as abstracts of all three (or maximum four) papers for a session.

 

Young scholars programme (YSP)

Young/new researchers (graduate students, doctoral and post-doctoral students, and new scholars within two years of receiving their degrees) are invited to submit their proposals as indicated in the above Call for Papers, also indicating their wish to participate in the ‘Young scholars programme’. Depending on interest, a decision about the exact shape of the program will be made with inputs from the applicants.

This may be a pre-conference workshop for new scholars, related to the themes of the conference, or a discussion forum related to their research.

Deadline to express interest in YSP to be submmited by email to: snovkovic@smu.ca by February 15, 2015.

Limited space.

Young scholars will also be eligible for a reduced registration fee. Financial travel support is possible, but it will depend on the number of applicants and available resources. More details will be available on the conference website closer to the date.

 

Websites: http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/—ed_emp/—emp_ent/—coop/documents/event/wcms_310424.pdf

http://ccr.ica.coop/sites/ccr.ica.coop/files/attachments/Call%20for%20Papers%20Coop%20and%20WoW%20Final2.pdf

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

KRISIS

KRISIS

NEVER WORK

Cardiff University Conference

Friday 10 July 2015

Call for Papers

“A corpse rules society – the corpse of labour.” – Manifesto Against Labour, Krisis-Group

Since the 1970s modern societies have been increasingly faced with social issues caused by a reliance on a form of life that technological development is making redundant: work. Competition drives companies to eject human beings from the labour process even while it relies on those people as consumers and producers of value. Equally, more human beings than ever before depend upon the capitalist production process for their survival, yet at this historical juncture it appears no longer to have need of them. It is this contradiction that some contemporary social critics have diagnosed as the basis of a crisis of civilisation through which we are currently living. The symptoms of this crisis are manifold and, one can argue, affect every aspect of society: privatisation, financialisation and economic crises, mass unemployment, the casualisation of labour and austerity programmes, regional conflict, the rise of political extremism, growing wealth inequality, individualisation, school shootings and the ever-growing number of people suffering from narcissistic personality disorders, to name but a few.

Despite the sheer scale of problems that society currently faces, the dominant social discourse has rarely considered that a crisis of the very categories of capitalist society could be the source of the problem. Work, in particular, is central to modern notions of individual and collective identity, of morality and even of human nature. It is the means through which individuals are expected to realise themselves and to gain access to social wealth. It is perhaps for this reason that, while work is often seen as central to resolving the current crisis – either through calls for higher wages and the right to work or through attacks on immigrants and the unemployed – it is rarely seen as the problem in itself. The aim of this conference is therefore to ask what might a critique of work usefully offer us in addressing contemporary social issues and, if one will allow it, the possibility of a greater crisis of modern civilisation.

Contributors might consider:

  • What kinds of critique of work are necessary, on the basis of what criteria and in the name of what alternatives?
  • What hampers such a critique and how can we remove, go around or through these barriers?
  • What critical theories can usefully contribute to a contemporary critique of work?
  • How can contemporary social movements benefit from a critique of work?
  • How might a theoretical critique of work manifest itself practically and how might critiques of work in practice inform theoretical critiques?
  • What lessons can we learn from historical and contemporary social movements against work?
  • What might a critique of work tell us about the political, economic and psychological forms and changes that society is currently experiencing?
  • What are particularly unexamined aspects of the critique of work that need addressing?
  • How widespread and persistent are critiques of work in contemporary social movements and what kinds of critique of work have they developed?
  • What useful relationship might the critique of work have with critiques of the state, patriarchy, politics and other social forms?
  • What alternatives to work still exist, have existed and might exist?

 

Confirmed keynote speakers will be: Anselm Jappe (author of Guy Debord, Les Aventures de la marchandise, Crédit à mort) and Norbert Trenkle (author of Die Große Entwertung, Dead Men Working). Both of our keynotes are members of the wertkritik, or “critique of value”, school of Marxian critique.

Abstracts of 350 words, with a small bio, should be sent to Dr Alastair Hemmens (hemmensa@cardiff.ac.uk) by 20 February 2015.

The conference itself will take place at Cardiff University, Wales, on 10 July 2015.

This research is funded by the Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship: Dr Alastair Hemmens, “‘Ne travaillez jamais’: The Critique of Work in Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century French Thought, from Charles Fourier to Guy Debord.”

Website: http://www.marblepunk.com/2015/01/never-work-cardiff-university.html

Robert Kurz

Robert Kurz

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Manifesto Against Labour

Manifesto Against Labour