For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

Dialectic of Enlightenment

by Adorno, T W; Horkheimer, M (2019)

Key Passage

Odysseus is represented in labor. Just as he cannot yield to the temptation to self-abandonment, so, as proprietor, he finally renounces even participation in labor, and ultimately even its management, whereas his men - despite their closeness to things - cannot enjoy their labor because it is performed under pressure, in desperation, with senses stopped by force... The oarsmen, who cannot speak to one another, are each of them yoked in the same rhythm as the modern worker in the factory… The actual working conditions in society compel conformism - not the conscious influences which also made the suppressed men dumb and separated them from truth. (p.36)


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Horkheimer citations, Adorno Citations



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