DOI: 10.30443/POI2019-0014

Hypertrophy of Work. Some Notes on Work and Recognition

Tiziana Faitini


The article contributes to mapping the contemporary Italian semantic field of “work” (“lavoro”), and focuses on some elements of the indetermination and the hypertrophy of this concept. In particular, the overly high expectations about work (meant as a socially organized activity) that can be identified in the current use of the concept in two contexts will be discussed. First, grounding on a number of qualitative interviews, the article will consider the claims for moral recognition put forward by professionals or workers which, both habitually and inappropriately, are referred to the market. This will allow us to highlight the relevance of the Marxian category of capital as an inhuman abstract subject. Second, a few remarks on the debate on “lavoro dignitoso”, the Italian phrase which translates, and extends, the English phrase “decent work”, will be offered.

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