BIFO THE SOUL AT WORK PDF

Distributed for Semiotext e. We can reach every point in the world but, more importantly, we can be reached from any point in the world. Privacy and its possibilities are abolished. Attention is under siege everywhere. Not silence but uninterrupted noise, not the red desert, but a cognitive space overcharged with nervous incentives to act: this is the alienation of our times Capital has managed to overcome the dualism of body and soul by establishing a workforce in which everything we mean by the Soul—language, creativity, affects—is mobilized for its own benefit.

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What impressions would he take from labor not done in a sooty industrial prison, but instead at a computer in a climate controlled office? Strip away his academic language and he seems to be urging us to slack-off more. Semiotics and critical theory also inform his thought.

Art is a primary concern, as it now seems devalued unless it increases capital. Poetry and painting become advertising. To top it off, everyone in the system is enslaved by debt. At this point Marx reenters the equation. As opposed to the physical pain of factory work, many jobs today involve sitting and typing. Here he is saying that the capitalistic drive to produce profits from mental labor is the cause of some serious postmodern angst. Capitalism, and his absolute distaste for it, is where Bifo makes himself absolutely clear.

The capitalist system is clearly not without faults, but presenting it as scapegoat for every ill we face may be too simple. At times Bifo seems a cranky old curmudgeon madly shaking his fist at the present. We are urged to reconsider how wealth is defined, to focus more on friendships and an easygoing life rather than profits. Who but Henry Ford himself could argue with that?

Despite a few glaring unanswered or unaddressed tidbits What about intellectual property, capitalism as it exists in developing countries, or the strange possibility that people may actually enjoy what they do? Bifo proves to be perpetually challenging and rewarding, capable of filling both mind and soul.

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The Soul at Work: From Alienation to Autonomy

August 7, by sytaffel. Putting the soul to work: this is the new form of alienation. Our desiring energy is trapped in the trick of self-enterprise, our libidinal investments are regulated according to economic rules, our attention is captures in the precariousness of virtual networks: every fragment of mental activity must be transformed into capital. This is contrasted with the situation under industrial capitalism, wherein the labour of the working class was largely confined to an eight-hour day in a factory, where for a portion of the day their bodies functioned as cogs rented to maintain the production of gigantic machines. While their bodies laboured their minds or souls were still perceived as free.

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The Soul at Work

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