Lecture 7 – Working
In the industrial revolution, people work together in one big factory, known as
centralization. The IR creates division of labour, before the IR, labour wasn’t really
divided, now it is. There is now an increase in management and office/support
occupations because there are thousands of workers in a factory and you need
someone to manage that. Something we associate with the IR is that it has
horrible working conditions.
(Second industrial revolution)
The form of assembly line allows the mass production of consumer goods for
mass production. Monopoly capitalism is that there is a realization that massive
production requires the emergence of power and resources. The emergence of
service work means that as work becomes more skilled, you need more service.
Welfare state, people move in the cities and live in urban environment, in order
to make sure they can live in a safe and healthy way in the urban, the gov. makes
sure that there is no money to make in the cities so that the government takes
care of the people not companies looking for profit.
Industrialization and urbanization lead to unique issues addresses by a new type
of social science: Sociology
When we think of industrial work, we think that they are mundane, boring and
routine jobs. In capitalism, the main objective is to make profit, and one way to
make profit is reducing the cost to make something, how do you do that? By
routinization and deskilling, routinization means letting the computers do the job.
This means you don’t need high skills to do job, by doing this, the worker
becomes dispensable. Scientific Management, every single work step is mapped
out and defined and the worker just follows these steps. Assembly-line controlled work, these highly strucuted and scientifically designed jobs creates stress for the
worker because of their boring routines etc.
Work and Alienation
Mark: work is a fundamentally meaningful thing to do. Absence of control means
most workers have no control over what is produced, how it is produced and for
whom it is produced. Division of labour alienates you form your work because
you have connection to the finished product, think about some guy who puts a
sticker on a car on assembly line, you never know what the finished product looks
like. Competition between and amongst workers in the workplace, capitalist they
make the work place competitive, they say if you don’t produce well we will fire
you! Commodification is that when we go to work, we go because we think of it
as a means to and end. We just go get our paychecks at the end of the month
The Modern Face of Industrial Work
In industrial nations (western nations) has become very different than the work
Marx was talking about. Unionized work places in which the works who are in it
have protection, good salaries because unions fight for them. Good working hours
and changes and improvement in the production processes like easier on the
body, for example no heavy lifting etc.
In developing nations, there is sweatshops, which are bad jobs and bad industrial
Post Industrial Era
(Third Industrial Revolution)
A lot of manual work is being taken over by robotics. The expansion of
international trade and global networking of financial markets, has been able to
achieve because of easy access to ship goods and products around and cheap oil.
We can no longer compete with production level of sweat shops, companies that off shore work to sweatshops in other countries because they pay so low. Is
Canada a knowledge economy, yes, because we have a highly education
population and highly education labour force.
Canadian Labour Market: Where do people work?
Three labour market sectors
Sector in which people work where they engage in the natural world,
farming fishing, natural resources
Manufacturing jobs, factory jobs, construction
Service jobs like hairdresser, lawyers etc.
Today there is a massive shift towards employment in tertiary sector.
For men, the most common jobs are 1) retail salespersons, Transport truck
drivers, Retail and wholesale trade managers
For women, 1) Retail salespersons, administrative assistants, registered nurses
For men there isn’t really a need of high knowledge to do their top jobs, but for
women you somewhat do, look at the top 3 ^
KNOW THE PERCENTAGES FOR EACH SECTOR IN 1900s, 1950s, 2000s
Shift Towards Service Sector
As organizations got bigger they needed people to run their functions. Socio-
demographic things like people wanting to live in urban places need people to
work in hotels, living in stores, etc. they need service workers. Aging society
means massive needs in services for older people. Social Structure, as people get more income they have higher spending power
and they spend it on their needs, and all this requires a service sector to meet
their needs. Channing family structure requires more services to be done outside
the house because women are no longer staying home and only taking care of
kids (daycare etc.)
Diversity of Service Work
Good high status work is highly knowledge-intensive, these jobs are usually
professional occupations and there are lots of job opportunities.
Decent service work is things such as in person services and clerical work
Bad service work includes low pay, low job security, little to no benefits, part-
time and temporary, jobs like hospitality, fast food and retail.
Millennium children are the first society in history that might not be able to
achieve upward mobility, or better jobs and pay than their parents. In relative
terms, older workers` salaries have grown much higher than those of young
workers. Why? Because there is a credential inflation, our BAs now isn’t worth AS
much as people who got BAs 30 years ago. Demographic change, there are larger
numbers of older workers not allowing younger people to get jobs. People aren’t
retiring. It is important to have connections in order to get into the field you want
to get into. Social Capital.
Increase of Non-Standard Work
Voluntary (youth) or involuntary part time work during the recession. IP is
strongly linked with the economy. If it collapsed, the rate of IPTW increases