Material Girls #2 – Work

The second episode of Material Girls is about work. We talk about what waged work means from an anti-capitalist perspective, social reproduction (the unpaid, hidden work that allows capitalism to keep going) and gender in the workplace.

In our previous podcast we critiqued ‘Lean In’ feminism, and liberal feminism in general. One of the many problems with liberal feminism is that it takes an uncritical approach to our exploitation at work, so we wanted to explain some of the anti-capitalist feminist perspectives we find more helpful. The abolition of waged labour is fundamental to the anti-capitalist project of transforming society. So much of the work we do to look after ourselves and each other (social reproduction) is unrecognised and unpaid. As anti-capitalist feminists we want to reorganise society to enable this work to be redistributed in a truly egalitarian way. When we go to our jobs as women, we are oppressed on the basis of our gender (as well our race, ability, sexuality etc) and our status as workers. It is possible to fight back in the workplace, through collective action. We briefly discuss some of the ways women have organised themselves, and won, at work. We’ll record a future episode on unions and workplace organising.

We’re looking for guests who’d like to join in the discussion or be interviewed. We’d particularly love to hear from women of colour, black women and trans women, who are not represented by our regular hosts. You can also let us know if you’re doing some feminist organising that you’d like us to plug, especially if it’s happening outside of London. Email us at materialgirlspod@gmail.com.

Links to recommended reading –

libcom.org/files/the-problem-w…ism-kathi-weeks.pdf

www.plutobooks.com/9780745399881/s…oduction-theory

monthlyreview.org/1998/11/01/on-ge…s-labor-history/

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