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Thesis Details
AuthorWiniecki, Donald Joseph
InstitutionCentral Queensland University
Abstract Tertiary labour is the fastest growing form of paid work in the West. Prevalence of technology-mediation of labour with computer and telecom networks is increasing. However, few inspect subjectivity in technology-mediated tertiary labour (TMTL). Using Foucaultian theory, I analyse how a constellation of forces in TMTL influences production of knowledge and how this affects power and subjectivity. Ethnographic methods are used to discover and clarify the creation of knowledge, disciplinary and governmental power, and how programs, technologies and strategies relate to workers’ action. Disciplinary power is activated in architecture, technologies and systems that watch, inscribe and make ‘scientific’ evaluations of productivity and quality. Workers are inculcated in organisational values and link themselves to organisational goals through governmental power. When these are combined, workers ‘see’ and ‘govern’ themselves in a rationality of productivity and quality–a recursive production and activation of knowledge and power appropriating them as willing subjects. This constellation of knowledge and power forwards a particular ‘truth’ about subjects that appears both ‘objective’ and ‘natural’, though it is as much an artefact of the organisation’s apparatus as it is of the subjects’ actions in it. This occurs through strategies and tactics in which subjects participate in practices of observing, inscribing and evaluating one’s self, and are made responsible for the outcome. However, there are ‘spaces left free’ where subjects exercise autonomous action, resistance and adjustments. Workers influence the objectified view of themselves, modifying knowledge and power in which they are produced as subjects. This occurs as ‘shadowboxing with data’–affecting what is seen and inscribed. Even in the highly regulated context of TMTL, workers are not just subjects of the organisation but participants in a production of their own selves.
Thesis 01front.pdf 41.9 Kb
02part1.pdf 714.4 Kb
03part2.pdf 3782.3 Kb
04part3.pdf 871.1 Kb
05part4.pdf 1111.4 Kb
06appendices.pdf 662.4 Kb