What is it about?

This paper evaluates critically the meta-narrative that capitalism is becoming more powerful, expansive, hegemonic and totalising as it stretches its tentacles ever wider across the globe and penetrates deeper into each and every corner of daily life. Reviewing the ways in which an emerging corpus of post- structuralist thought has deconstructed this powerful discourse that closes off the future of work in relation to western economies and the majority (third) world, the intention here is to further contribute to this burgeoning critique by unpacking this meta-narrative in relation to the postsocialist societies of central and east Europe.

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Why is it important?

Drawing upon evidence from surveys of time use and household work practices as well as the longitudinal New Democracies Barometer (NDB) surveys, this will reveal that far from a hegemonic capitalism, the organization of work in post-socialist societies is grounded in a plurality of economic practices. Nor is any evidence identified of a unidimensional and linear trajectory of economic development towards a more commodified world. The outcome is a call for a politics of re-representation of the realities of work in post-socialist societies so as to open up a broader discussion of the future of work than has so far occurred.

Perspectives

Rethinks the inevitability of capitalism in post-socialist countries

Professor Colin C Williams
University of Sheffield

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This page is a summary of: Work organization in post-socialist societies, Futures, December 2005, Elsevier, DOI: 10.1016/j.futures.2005.02.002.
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