In order to prevent the potential autonomy of labor, Paolo Virno asserts that capital employs precisely “that which is common, that is, the intellect and language” (68). Suely Rolnik colorfully states that capital has become creativity’s pimp (“The Geopolitics of Pimping”). By moving away from the Fordist assembly line to a networked organization, capital provides what Brian Holmes terms the “flexible personality” of social laborers the creative space for self-valorization (“The Flexible Personality”). In a network where social laborers are given the freedom to manage their own projects, Holmes argues, “individuals aspire to mix their labor with their leisure” (“The Flexible Personality”). Sylvère Lotringer notes that the surplus value extracted by the network stems from “the idle time of the mind that keeps enriching, unacknowledged, the fruits of immaterial labor” (Forward). The industrial factory has been replaced by Mario Tronti’s “social factory” (“Social Capital”) and Antonio Negri’s “factory without walls” (The Politics of Subversion 204) creating the current situation in which “the temporal measure of exploitation has become not the working day but the life-span” (Dyer-Witheford).
Yikes! It seems our subjectivity, as Félix Guattari would say, has been snatched by capitalism!
Lotringer, Sylvère. “We, the Multitude.” Forward. A Grammar of the Multitude: For an Analysis of Contemporary Forms of Life. By Paolo Virno. Los Angeles, CA: Semiotext, 2004. 7-19. Print.
Negri, Antonio. The Politics of Subversion: A Manifesto for the Twenty-First Century. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press, 2005. Print.
Tronti, Mario. “Social Capital.” Telos 17 (1973): 98-121. Print.
Virno, Paolo. A Grammar of the Multitude: For an Analysis of Contemporary Forms of Life. Los Angeles, CA: Semiotext, 2004. Print.