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RESEARCH ARTICLE From the precariat to the multitude Ben Trott* Department of Political Science, JFI Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany This paper situates Guy Standing’s recent work on ‘the precariat’ within a broader body of literature exploring processes of ‘precarisation’, at work and across the social field. It sets out the differential distribution of ‘precarity’ (including on the basis of gender, geography, status and sector) resulting from transformations in labour and the political economy, the rollback of

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Introduction A post-industrial ‘precariat’ has emerged ( Wacquant, 2009 ; Standing 2011 ) characterised by social insecurity, to which the state’s response has been to re-assert class discipline by rendering labour more dependent on insecure work ( Wacquant, 2009 ; Wiggan, 2015 ; Umney et al, 2018 ). This has been accompanied by far-reaching reforms of the welfare delivery system. The creation of Jobcentre Plus promised a revolution in the way the workless would be supported by merging the Employment Service and Benefits Agency. However, the relationship

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RESEARCH ARTICLE Authoritarianism and the precariat Bill Jordan* Social and Public Policy, Plymouth University, Plymouth, UK This article traces present-day policy debates on precarious employment to the nine- teenth century. Liberal and paternalist versions of state authority emerged as responses to early capitalist development, and precariousness was an issue that contributed to the differentiation between them. The author argues that these connections with the bases of state power help explain why radical alternative approaches to today’s challenges find it so

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RESEARCH ARTICLE Breaking the heartland: creating the precariat in the US lower rust belt Joseph J. Varga* Labor Studies Department, Indiana University Bloomington, Eigenmann Hall, 1900 East Tenth Street, 10th Floor Room 1031, Bloomington, IN 7405-3085, USA This article uses the context of the struggle over antiunion legislation in Indiana to explore the decomposition of the New Deal working class, and the emergence of a more precarious class of workers in the lower rust belt of the United States Midwest. Through an examination of workers in three economic

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INTRODUCTION The precariat In his recent work, Guy Standing has identified a new class which has emerged from neo-liberal restructuring with, he argues, the revolutionary potential to change the world: the precariat. This is ‘a class-in-the-making, internally divided into angry and bitter factions’ consisting of ‘a multitude of insecure people, living bits-and-pieces lives, in and out of short-term jobs, without a narrative of occupational development, including millions of frustrated educated youth who do not like what they see before them, millions of women

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based on a monopolistic position in the market in terms of income, status and power. More recently, though, there has been some debate about deprofessionalisation in a world in which the rewards of professions are often seen to have been diminished by various changing socio-political circumstances. For neo-Marxists this equates to proletarianisation linked to the labour process in capitalist development which is in turn related to membership of the precariat ( Han 2018 ). In this sense, both of these perspectives have a bearing on the relative positioning of health

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CONCLUSION The precariat, intergenerational justice and universal basic income Juliana Bidadanure* School of Politics, Economics and Philosophy, University of York, York, UK This inspiring special issue provides an overview of the multidimensional nature of precariousness in the neoliberal world. It takes issue with the numerous forms of insecurity that a multitude of people experience in their daily lives. The authors alternately employ the concepts of precariat, precariatization and precariousness as tools to address the ways in which people stand in relation

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REPLY Reply to Bill Jordan’s ‘Authoritarianism and the precariat’ Daryl Glaser* Department of Political Studies, School of Social Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Republic of South Africa This is a reply to: Jordan, Bill. 2013. “Authoritarianism and the precariat.” Global Discourse. 3 (3–4): 388–403. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/23269995.2013.857529 Jordan’s paper represents a valuable effort to read the idea of the precariat, and the fear of it, back into the history of Western Europe’s and the US’s divergent regimes of social control and incorporation

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RESEARCH ARTICLE Precarity of place: a complement to the growing precariat literature Susan Banki* Department of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia This article suggests that our current understandings of precarity are insufficient to describe the specific challenges of noncitizen living. It offers a counter concept that is related, but distinct from precarity: ‘precarity of place’. The term, far from being focused on the way precarity manifests itself in the workplace, instead focuses on the challenges of physical residence for

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Life in low-pay, no-pay Britain

Winner of the British Academy Peter Townsend Prize for 2013

How do men and women get by in times and places where opportunities for standard employment have drastically reduced? Are we witnessing the growth of a new class, the ‘Precariat’, where people exist without predictability or security in their lives? What effects do flexible and insecure forms of work have on material and psychological well-being?

This book is the first of its kind to examine the relationship between social exclusion, poverty and the labour market. It challenges long-standing and dominant myths about ‘the workless’ and ‘the poor’, by exploring close-up the lived realities of life in low-pay, no-pay Britain. Work may be ‘the best route out of poverty’ sometimes but for many people getting a job can be just a turn in the cycle of recurrent poverty – and of long-term churning between low-skilled ‘poor work’ and unemployment. Based on unique qualitative, life-history research with a ‘hard-to-reach group’ of younger and older people, men and women, the book shows how poverty and insecurity have now become the defining features of working life for many.

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