Article i 'Tidsskrift for arbejdsliv' 3 2006, page 23-36.
English resume

The adventurous work

Sofie Birch

The article argue, that the case of creative work and film directors, although an extreme case, is useful to understand young peoples working experiences and wishes for self-actualisation, as well as the dangers of self-exploitation in the creative industries and other knowledge intensive working places.
In affinity to studies carried out within the framework of the British cultural economy tradition, this study shows, that the young film directors anticipate their big break through, but that the break through most likely is extremely difficult to achieve. A long period with non- or low paid work, which the film directors account for temporarily, is in realty a never-ending rite de passage.
Thus, the film directors find themselves captured in a state of self-exploitation, which causes seriously consequences in terms of life planning, private economic and employment rights such as pension etc.
Whereas other studies stay with this paradox of self-exploitation – why do they do it? – this study attempts to take the film directors own experiences of their working life into account, and to understand how they themselves make work work for them. This is undertaken with a shift in theoretical view from the Foucauldian governmentality-school to that of existential phenomenology. The study shows, that the film directors not only are driven by a vain wish for famousness, but that they are attracted to concrete, exciting and challenging experiences through their work. The study employs the late Foucault’s approach to aesthetic practices of the self and Simmel’s concept of adventure as theoretical framework in the analysis of these aesthetic working experiences.


Tidsskrift for arbejdsliv

(Journal for Working Life)


 

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in Danish frontpage Nyt om arbejdsliv
editor Jørgen Burchardt