Language Put to Work: Cognitive Capitalism, Call Centre Labour, and Worker Inquiry

Enda Brophy (2011) “Language Put to Work: Cognitive Capitalism, Call Centre Labour, and Worker Inquiry”, Journal of Communication Inquiry 35(4): 411-417.

This article considers the growing convergence between labour and communication in the digital economy. Taking the rapid growth of call center employment as its focus, the article argues that the approach taken by the political and theoretical tradition of post-operaismo, or autonomist Marxism, has produced promising encounters between labour activism and communication inquiry. Through its theory of cognitive capitalism and its focus on labour resistance, the article suggests, post-operaismo offers communication scholars a set of tools through which to move beyond the limits of both liberal-democratic theories of the knowledge worker and Marxist labour process theory.

Read more