Willing Slaves: How the Overwork Culture is Ruling Our Lives

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9780007163724: Willing Slaves: How the Overwork Culture is Ruling Our Lives

A hard-hitting exposé of the overwork culture and modern management techniques that seduce millions of people to hand over the best part of their lives to their employer.

Work has come to increasingly dominate British national life. ‘Job intensification’ affects every shopfloor, office, classroom and hospital, as a cult of efficiency has driven a missionary magnetism of tighter deadlines and more exacting targets in the most exploitative and manipulative work culture developed since the Industrial Revolution.

What do we get in return for this hard work? Stagnant wages, job insecurity, stress, exhaustion; the British workforce has not been so powerless for over a century. ‘Willing Slaves’ exposes the paradox that, though we’re all being exploited, it’s work that has come to give our lives meaning: religion, political causes, family life have become secondary. This book reveals how this astonishing fraud has been perpetrated, how millions of workers know they face burnout but believe ‘there is no alternative’.

Bunting tells us how to take our lives back – and what will happen if we don’t.

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Review:

‘Brilliantly thorough and thoroughly brilliant attack on the contemporary work ethic.’ Guardian

‘Excellent.’ Suzanne Moore, Mail on Sunday

‘Highly readable and informative. ’ TLS

From the Publisher:

The British now work the longest hours in Europe. British workers are also under more pressure: ‘job intensification’ affects every shopfloor, office, classroom and hospital, as a cult of efficiency has driven a missionary magnetism of fighter deadlines and more exacting targets in the most exploitative and manipulative work culture developed since the industrial revolution.

What do we get in return for this hard work? Stagnant wages, job insecurity, stress, exhaustion; the British workforce has not been so powerless for over a century. In the last decade, inequality has grown more sharply in Britain than at any time since the Edwardian era; the fat cats’ pay is now 25 times that of the average worker.

Willing Slaves exposes the paradox that, though we’re all being exploited, it’s work that has come to give our lives meaning: religion, political causes, family life have become secondary. This book reveals how this astonishing fraud has been perpetrated, how millions of workers know they face burnout but believe ‘there is no alternative’. Bunting tells us what we have to do to take our lives back – and what will happen if we don’t.

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Bunting, Madeleine
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