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The space of value: capital accumulation and labour under financialization

CategoríaColoquio
Fecha 26 02 2016

Conferencista:  Mazen Labban, profesor del Departamento de Geografía de Rutgers University.

Descripción: Drawing on my research on the oil industry, I reflect on the changing forms of antagonism between capital and labour under contemporary regimes of financialized accumulation. In the past twenty years or so nonfinancial corporations have increasingly shifted investments and trading to financial channels signals. The financialization of corporate operations presumably signals a shift in power over the accumulation process towards a rentier class composed of private and institutional investors, with the implication that the labour process is no longer a primary source of value for capital and that the tension between corporate managers and financial markets has displaced the antagonism between labour and capital. I challenge those claims and show that financialization has deepened the subsumption of labour under capital through various forms of restructuring, including a combination of layoffs, subcontracting and intensification of the labour process, and a spatial reorganization that has centralized more power over the production process with the corporation while appearing to emancipate capital accumulation from material production. I elucidate the spatial conditions of possibility of financialization and the contradictory drive of the corporation to transcend labour and at the same time to subsume labour deeper under the power of capital.

 
 

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  • 26 02 2016

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