This essay investigates the present reality of reproduction and the labor it requires. Labor of reproduction, encompassing not only childbearing and rearing but also more generally domestic labor and the care of dependent persons, is usually excluded from political and economic analysis as a result of the separation of private life from public life. In the recent past such labor was sometimes delegated to the state, but today it is increasingly delegated to the labor market. This produces the “wagification” of reproductive labor, which results in large-scale migrations of care workers throughout Europe. Migrant care workers and their nonmigratory families themselves require care, and to provide it “global care chains” are constructed across national boundaries. Such commodification cannot constitute the common of care, which calls instead for a revolutionary solution.
Alisa Del Re; Care and the Common. Genre 1 July 2013; 46 (2): 123–135. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00166928-2087962
Download citation file: