Contenu du sommaire : Agency Beyond Precarity: Platforms and the Multiplication of Labour Regimes in China
|Titre du numéro||Agency Beyond Precarity: Platforms and the Multiplication of Labour Regimes in China|
|Texte intégral en ligne||Accessible sur l'internet|
- Editorial – Precarity, Platforms, and Agency: The Multiplication of Chinese Labour - Chris King-chi Chan, Éric Florence, Jack Linchuan Qiu p. 3-7
- Bordering Work and Personal Life: Using “the Multiplication of Labour” to Understand Ethnic Performers' Work in Southwest China - Jingyu Mao p. 9-17 This article explores how “the multiplication of labour” can be used as a theoretical lens to make sense of the blurred boundaries between work and non-work spheres. It does so by drawing on the experiences of ethnic performers in Southwest China. Ethnic performance becomes a site of border struggles, as performers struggle with their desirable performance and undesirable presence, as well as work's colonising effect over their personal lives. “The multiplication of labour” points to work's diversification, meaning that performers are expected to do multiple aspects of labour at the same time, many of which are unrecognised and unremunerated. It also captures work's intensification, which is shown not only through the prolonged working hours but also in how work intrudes into the most intimate areas of performers' personal lives. In resistance, ethnic performers engage in a more playful and reflexive self-making, which is nevertheless constrained by ethnicity and gender.
- Platform Labour and Contingent Agency in China - Ping Sun, Julie Yujie Chen p. 19-27 The impact of digital platforms upon the employment structure and work conditions has attracted widespread scholarly attention. However, research on workers' agency and subjectivity in the platform economy is relatively under-explored. Using food-delivery workers in China as a point of departure, this article provides an empirically grounded and theoretically informed account of delivery workers' agentic performances. We use the notion of contingent agency to capture the expedient, ongoing, and variegated measures developed and manoeuvred by workers to exercise agency from their structurally vulnerable position in the labour process and employment relations. While agency in practice is always contingent and never static, we conceptualise the notion by unpacking the multiple factors that have shifted the ground for workers and hence contributed to the contingency, to shed light on the interplay between workers' agency and the unstable and elusive character of platform capitalism. The article concludes with a discussion on the implications of workers' contingent agency for labour politics.
- The Forming of E-platform-driven Flexible Specialisation: How E-commerce Platforms Have Changed China's Garment Industry Supply Chains and Labour Relations - Lulu Fan p. 29-37 E-commerce platforms have promoted the rise of consumer-demand-driven supply chains in the garment industry. This kind of supply chain has raised the demand for a new type of production organisation exemplified by low processing costs, small batches, multi-varieties, and quick reorders. Drawing on the insights of flexible specialisation theory, this paper proposes the concept of e-platform-driven flexible specialisation to describe this emerging production organisation form. This flexible specialisation is characterised by highly fragmented and informal production organisations such as husband-and-wife-run workshops and production units based on daily wage workers. In the context of a severe labour shortage in the garment industry, workers participate in the construction of these informal production organisations in order to obtain higher wages and work autonomy. However, the increase in informal employment also makes garment workers more atomised and vulnerable to social risks such as the outbreak of COVID-19. It is necessary to innovate labour relation negotiation modes to cope with the impacts of the rise of the platform economy on labour relations.
- Afterword - Sandro Mezzadra, Brett Neilson p. 39-40
- Yugong Yishan: Myth, Utopia, and Community in Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art - Laia Manonelles Moner p. 41-48 This paper examines the way in which the fable The Foolish Old Man Who Removed the Mountains (Yugong yishan 愚公移山) has informed the creative output of a range of major Chinese artists (Xu Beihong, Zhang Lin, Zhang Huan, and He Yunchang) over a period spanning the 1940s to the present. Drawing on the field of art history, it examines a variety of works that, despite responding to different or even antithetical positionings, demonstrate a utopian belief in the potentiality of the community or the collective, where perseverance and audacity are able to transform what seems impossible. These seemingly absurd artworks evince the audacity of these artists, as well as their determination to participate in communal projects aimed at changing society through symbolic interventions.
- Yugong Yishan: Myth, Utopia, and Community in Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art - Laia Manonelles Moner p. 41-48
- BONINO, Michele, Francesca GOVERNA, Maria Paola REPELLINO, and Angelo SAMPIERI (eds.). 2019. The City after Chinese New Towns: Spaces and Imaginaries from Contemporary Urban China. Basel: Birkhäuser. - Judith Audin p. 61-62
- LEE, Ching Kwan and Ming SLING, (eds.). 2019. Take Back Our Future: An Eventful Sociology of the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. - Jenny Chan p. 62-63