That is the provocative question asked at a forthcoming workshop in Sydney , Australia at which CMCI’s Rosalind Gill will be giving the opening keynote.
The talk will review “what we know” about the features of cultural and creative work, discussing issues such as precariousness, bulimic patterns of working, and the intensification and extensification of work over time and space . Secondly, it will explore the notion of “self exploitation” that has emerged as a key term for theorizing the labouring conditions and subjectivities of workers involved in the cultural and creative industries. Finally, the talk will raise questions about what still remains a largely silenced issue in debates about the conditions of cultural workers–inequalities between workers. Gill’s speech will explore how gender, race and class inequalities have become not simply unmanageable but unspeakable in cultural work–even by those most adversely affected by them. How do we begin to challenge the toxic myths of egalitarianism and meritocracy that circulate in the cultural and creative industries–and in much writing about them? And how can we make sure that questions about inequality are on the agenda of a politics that seeks to challenge and resist contemporary labouring conditions. The aim of this talk is to stimulate discussion and ‘launch’ the event on November 25th and 26th.