By Filip Vostal (auth.)
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Extra resources for Accelerating Academia: The Changing Structure of Academic Time
At the same time, in contrast to other early modern or pre-modern socio-cultural regimes (such as the reign of the Catholic Church), the late-modern context does not provide for or allow ideas or institutions of potential ‘reconciliation’. All failures, shortcomings and ‘sins’ fall back directly to the subject: ‘it is exclusively our own fault if we are unhappy or fail to stay in the race’ (2010a: 99). There is a very specific problem in the critical perspectives discussed, which ultimately instigates the present inquiry.
Capital’s social dominance – underpinned with imperatives of competition and accumulation – structures relations of production including the organization of labour and tempo of work, as emblematically shown in Chaplin’s Modern Times (1936). The disciplinary apparatus that the workforce is subjected to represents the fundamental leverage structuring and co-shaping of the relationship between capital and labour. The free market – an ideological doctrine of the capitalist system – simply postulates that profit is generated if a capitalist actor, the owner of the means of production, invests as little as possible in the labour process, competes in the market and generates surplus.
The faster a machine can manufacture the less time is needed for a unit of production. The overall cost is lower and thus the more surplus is available. This yields more manoeuvring space for a capitalist and thus a competitive advantage (or a lead) in a market. Hence the value of time efficiency in the production process is highly valorized, and subsequently the time that is saved in production increases the possibility of surplus and profit. Boltanski and Chiapello, highlighting the relationship between competition and accumulation, state: ‘Each capitalist entity is constantly being threatened by the actions of competing entities.
Accelerating Academia: The Changing Structure of Academic Time by Filip Vostal (auth.)