From the second half of the nineties the question of subjectivity has become a crucial subject in the dispute between the Foucauldian and Marxist theorists of Labour Process Theory (LPT). This paper intends to address some of the problematic elements that sprung form this debate and introduce some reference points that can help define the field of analysis of subjectivity. The hypothesis is that there exists neither a methodological nor a logical opposition between Marx and Foucault. I suggest that the convergence of Marx and Foucault allows a more generative theorising of subjectivity by looking at the constituent dimension of resistance. Resistance operates as a process of destructuring identities; therefore the struggle for subjectivity can be assumed as the field in which the antagonism of social forces is played out, expressed and experimented. Empirically, I provide an illustration of the ways in which individuals respond to the process of production of identity in the social and productive order of post-Fordism. Focusing on the lean factory, I draw from texts generated in interviews with workers to explore the processes of subjectivation and to offer an understanding of resistances. The research was carried out at the Integrated Factory of Fiat in Melfi (Italy) and the Nissan Factory in Sunderland (United Kingdom). The interpretive work unfolds through fragments of diverse narrations by an extensive text analysis based on discourse analytical tools. I use a ‘symptomatic reading’ to search and recognize the presence of more than one discourse in a text, and to explore the absent conjunctions that divide it into a multiplicity of meanings. In my opinion, this methodology opens up the possibility of thinking new universes of reference for subjectivation.

Identity and Subjectivity in Post-fordism: For an analysis of resistance in the contemporary workplace

COMMISSO, Giuliana
2006

Abstract

From the second half of the nineties the question of subjectivity has become a crucial subject in the dispute between the Foucauldian and Marxist theorists of Labour Process Theory (LPT). This paper intends to address some of the problematic elements that sprung form this debate and introduce some reference points that can help define the field of analysis of subjectivity. The hypothesis is that there exists neither a methodological nor a logical opposition between Marx and Foucault. I suggest that the convergence of Marx and Foucault allows a more generative theorising of subjectivity by looking at the constituent dimension of resistance. Resistance operates as a process of destructuring identities; therefore the struggle for subjectivity can be assumed as the field in which the antagonism of social forces is played out, expressed and experimented. Empirically, I provide an illustration of the ways in which individuals respond to the process of production of identity in the social and productive order of post-Fordism. Focusing on the lean factory, I draw from texts generated in interviews with workers to explore the processes of subjectivation and to offer an understanding of resistances. The research was carried out at the Integrated Factory of Fiat in Melfi (Italy) and the Nissan Factory in Sunderland (United Kingdom). The interpretive work unfolds through fragments of diverse narrations by an extensive text analysis based on discourse analytical tools. I use a ‘symptomatic reading’ to search and recognize the presence of more than one discourse in a text, and to explore the absent conjunctions that divide it into a multiplicity of meanings. In my opinion, this methodology opens up the possibility of thinking new universes of reference for subjectivation.
subjectivity; Post-Fordism ; lean Factory
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/144810
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