primarily by Maurizio Lazzarato, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri – succeed, to a certain extent .. Lazzarato, M. () ‘Immaterial Labor’, trans. P. Colilli and. Much of the work performed today is immaterial labor and it involves new power relations in which NOTE: Lazzarato is not describing digital. At the simplest level of definition, Lazzarato claims that immaterial labor is “labor that produces the informational and cultural content of the.

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Twenty years of restructuring of the big factories has led to a curious paradox. In fact, the work on “aesthetic production” of Bakhtin and the rest of the Leningrad Circle has this same social focus.

In a sense, life becomes inseparable from work. The Cycle of Immaterial Prodution Lazzarato argues that role of communication is the key distinguishing feature between Fordism and post-Fordism.

Lazzarato () Immaterial Labor | Cheryl Williams

In effect, Lazzarato argues that social production offers the possibility of a “silent revolution” beyond capitalism. Post-colonial feminist writer Lisa Nakamura, and others have described immaterial labor in the performance of online identity, and racial identity and identity performance, or “avatarization of the self”. This page was last modified on 15 Juneimmaferial One could say that in the highly skilled, qualified worker, the “communicational model” is already given, already constituted, and that its potentialities are immatedial defined.

New modes of seeing and knowing demand new technologies, and new technologies demand new forms of seeing and knowing. Immaterial Labor All of these characteristics of postindustrial economics present both in large-scale industry and the tertiary sector are accentuated in the form of properly “immaterial” production. This activity makes immediately apparent something that material production had “hidden,” namely, that labor produces not only commodities, but first and foremost it produces the capital relation.

In Virno, Paolo; Hardt, Michael. The consumer is no longer limited to consuming commodities destroying them in the act of consumption. The fact that immaterial labor produces subjectivity and economic value at the same time demonstrates how capitalist production has invaded our lives and has broken down all the oppositions among economy, power, and knowledge.


I have defined working-class labor as an abstract activity that nowadays involves the application of subjectivity. He identifies Human Resources research and management, along with computer and media systems as the systems that mediate companies’ engagement with this dilemma ,7.

Issue 17, Fall Since the production of services results in no material and durable good, we might define the labor involved in this production as immaterial labor—that is, labor that produces an immaterial good, such as a service, knowledge, or communication [6]. Industry’s control over this new labor power presupposes the independent organization and “free entrepreneurial activity” of the labor power.

Immaterial Labour, Precariousness and Cultural Work”.

Immaterial Labor

Waged labor and direct subjugation to organization no longer constitute the principal form of the contractual relationship between capitalist and worker. This model reveals aspects that traditional economic categories tend to obscure and that, as Laborr will show, constitute the “specific differences” of the post-Taylorist means of production. It can lead us to define, at a territorial level, a space for a radical autonomy of the productive synergies of immaterial labor.

By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. It has also been argued that the ubiquitous sharing enabled by the digital age has made it harder for artists and creators to claim authorship of their works, creating an inevitable situation of immaterial labor in the participation in many online platforms.

Terranova Free Labor: You are commenting using your WordPress.

Lazzarato argues that immaterial labor occurs when companies co-opt a wider capacity for social labor “takes it on board and adapts it”8. Today, as general social knowledge becomes ever more a direct force of production, we increasingly think like computers and the interactive model of communication technologies becomes more and more central to our laboring activities.

Maurizio Lazzarato Immaterial Labor. inmaterial

Immaterial labor

The “great transformation” that began at the start of the s has changed the very terms in which the question is posed. As I noted earlier, immaterial lazzarat produces first and foremost a social relation – it produces not only commodities, but also the capital relation.

It becomes possible to look at things from the point of view of social synergies, and immaterial labor can be taken on board by virtue of its global efficacy.


The material effects of what immaterial labor claims are cognitive and affective activities, has been consistently used to discredit the idea of immaterial labor. You are commenting using your Facebook account. In effect, as a component of immaterial labor, affective labor has achieved a dominant position of the highest value in the contemporary informational economy. Large-scale industry and services To recognize the new characteristics of the production cycle of alzzarato labor, we should compare it with the production immateriwl large-scale industry and services.

Even the most rudimentary forms of artificial intelligence allow the computer to expand and perfect its operation based on interaction with its user and its environment. Moving from this common basis, there are two differing schools of thought: Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The Autonomy of the Productive Synergies of Immaterial Labor My working hypothesis, then, is that the cycle of immaterial labor takes as its starting point a social labo power that is independent and able to organize both its own work and its relations with business entities.

This transformation of working-class lazzwrato into a labor of control, of handling information, into a decision-making capacity that involves the investment of subjectivity, affects workers in varying ways according to their lazzarafo within the factory hierarchy, but it is nevertheless present as an irreversible process. In this environment, argues Lazzarato, “the capitalist needs to find an unmediated way of establishing command over subjectivity itself.

Systems theory, by eliminating the constraint of the market and giving pride of place to organization, is more open to the new phenomenology of labor and in particular to the emergence of immaterial labor.

The Lessons of Care Work”. Producing Lazzzarato for the Digital Economy.

The role of immaterial labor is to promote continual innovation in the forms and conditions of communication and thus in work and consumption. Radical Thought in Italy: