Call for Papers Re-visiones Journal: Labor, time, jobs, and the construction of subjectivities through artistic and cultural practices.
Deadline for submissions: 20 May 2022. Language: Spanish, English, Portuguese. Editors: Marta Labad and María Ruido.
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Re-Visiones journal invites submissions for the collective elaboration of an issue devoted to one of the most fundamental questions in the world today: jobs, labor, and construction of subjectivities in relation to work identities. We are interested as well in forms of temporal experience produced by employment and labor, which have caused or continue to cause deep unrest.
The first division of labor is a gendered division of tasks, distinguishing between "productive" and "reproductive" labors. This sexual division of labor is overlapped by a racial division of tasks, which was accentuated in 1492 and which very often involves slaved or forced labor.
With the gradual industrialization process, which began in UK and extended gradually to Europe and the rest of the planet, the sexual and racial divide was overlapped by a class-based division of labor. This new division created a clear gap between a minority of people who owns the means of production and accumulates capital, and a majority, who must sell their labor to survive. In the early days of Modernity, the latter group had been deprived of the communal lands that provided them with the means for autonomy and subsistence.
The history of contemporary labor has been traditionally explained through a timeline that begins with the first industrial revolution (triggered by the steam and coal engine that would culminate in the Fordist line of production). It continues with a second industrial revolution driven by petrol since the Second World War, and which nourished what has been referred to as "Post-Fordism". This paved the way for a third revolution prompted by digitalization and globalization processes, which were intensified during the 80s and culminated in what we have called the "fourth revolution", supported by the development of AI and robotization.
This straight timeline, so proper of the Modern Western world, is clearly bound to an idea of limitless progress. However, the timeline seems to us far more complex and fragmented, since it entails brutal subjection processes (from the imposition of a universal abstract time in the 19th Century factories to the hiperflexibility experienced by "false" self-employed workers and promoted through apps): The processes of industrialization and its consequences were not equal on each continent, and the alleged "immaterialization" of capitalism seems not so true and correct. Behind the curtains of informational capitalism, a tremendous amount of "material" labor continues to be carried out by racialized people and women. We are referring here not only to "reproductive", invisible, underpaid or not paid at all (and socially devaluated) labor, but also to the tremendous amount of labor taking place in polluting and heavy industries, which have been relocated outside the Western-centric space (China, India, Indonesia...the big factories of the actual world). Direct or indirect extractivism processes sustain our technological consumerism, which is intimately connected to raw materials obtained from ex-colonies, such as Latin America, Africa, or Asia.
For this same reason, we find extremely necessary, to emphasize that the texture of time is too rich and complex to be reduced to one dominant temporality. The myriad ways of perceiving time amid this global mess are extremely intertwined with a wide variety of jobs and labors. Our experience of time changes radically, depending on the place we occupy in what Shara Sharma has called "biopolitic economy of time" (Sharma, 2014). We would also like to call attention to the fact that, since the early days of industrial revolution, the body of the worker has been violently re-temporalized to be more efficient. Clocks, chronometers, punch-clocks, mobile technologies, schedules, calendars, the eight-hour day or flexibility, are part of a broad array of instruments meant to set our most intimate tempos and routines, which do not fully belong to us, but to the needs and demands of capital. In value society, the diverse modes of experiencing time are colored by logics of productivity, which organize how we value and sense time. In short, they promote a devaluation and asymmetrical distribution of time, which needs to be further politized.
From the field of the visual studies, art history, architecture, and artistic practices, we invite researchers, or any other person interested in writing and reflecting on some of the aspects that seem fundamental to expand our understanding on forms of contemporary labor, the identities attached to them, as well as forms of resistance and political re-articulation.
Some of the topics we hope to explore in this issue include:
- Relationship between construction of subjectivities, mental health, jobs/labor and time. - Artistic and cultural practices engaging labor, in a wide time and geographical frame. - Visual imagery, related to the temporalities of labor, chrononormativity, flexibility, short term horizons, devaluation and inequal distribution of time. - Material, racialized, feminized or invisibles labor. Labor carried out on the margins. - The future of work. Works with no future. Futures with no work. - Blurry boundaries between job and labor. - Side-effects, like burnout, its outbreaks, and consequences, from the housewife to the academic peer. - Working syndromes: strikes, arrhythmias, lack of harmony, losing pace or rhythm, disturbances caused by reproductive labor, working life. - Bodies and unwound clocks. Echos of Bartleby and Penelope in the contemporary world. - Case studies revealing and articulating dissent attitudes and tactics, in its multiple forms, in relation to imposed tempos and productivity demands of capital.
Submitted articles may be written in English, Spanish, or Portuguese, and should have a maximum of 5,500 words, including notes, (references not included), an abstract of 150 words, with 4 to 6 keywords. Authors must follow the guidelines listed in the Authors Guidelines on the journal’s website. Submissions must include a separate document containing a short biographical note of the author, up to 150 words. Online submissions: authors will need to register before submitting their essay, by sending an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org