Organized by Emaline Friedman & Colombene Gorton
Workers are becoming more critical of capitalism, recognizing how it foments social inequality and environmental degradation. So formulated, these problems suggest an immediate connection between individual purpose and care for humanity and the planet. Frustration, anger, and despair toward work have historically lead to mass actions demanding more rights and better conditions for workers. These actions continue in new loci of industrial production (e.g. outside of North America and Europe).
But what happens to this awareness, and worker discontents, in the world’s wealthiest nations, where efforts at collectivizing were first met with anti-union actions and then with a systematic cultural separation of laborer’s bodies and minds? Our hunch is that the ongoing traditions of organizing, cooperative development, and democratic governance have lots to teach us. But what do they entail in the present? How do we enact them? That’s what we want to explore via the design and implementation of a new kind of “work skills” workshop. Screen reader support enabled.
This assembly is a continuation of the Q2 group “The Future of Labor” where we explored our work experiences from the trivial, to the absurd, to the profound. This quarter we seek to build momentum from this exploration by formalizing meaningful ways of addressing our ideal work-lives. The aim is to produce a workshop or series of workshops to source and share about alternatives to capitalist “business as usual”. These may include connecting with emerging social organisms, studying governance processes, and embodying cultural practices that build the solidarity so foreign to us within the current system.