For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

Critique of Dialectical Reason

by Sartre, Jean-Paul (2004)

Key Passage

in so far as body is function, function need and need praxis, one can say that human labour, the original praxis by which man produces and reproduces his life, is entirely dialectical: its possibility and its permanent necessity rest upon the relation of interiority which unites the organism with the environment and upon the deep contradiction between the inorganic and organic orders, both of which are present in everyone. Its primary movement and its essential character are defined by a twofold contradictory transformation: the unity of the project endows the practical field with a quasi-synthetic unity, and the crucial moment of labour is that in which the organism makes itself inert (the man applies his weight to the lever, etc.) in order to transform the surrounding inertia. (p.90)


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