Emanuel Rota (French & Italian)

Emanuel Rota

Senior Research Fellow, 2016-2018

Mediterranean Laziness: The Invention of a Vice
The modern concept of laziness has played and continues to play a crucial role in the criminalization of poverty. My project reconstructs the invention of laziness as a dispositif that allowed industrial societies to coordinate the languages of ethics, economics, and medicine in their relation with peripheral areas and individuals. By transforming laziness into a function of climate, religion, or race, not only could marginal subjects be represented as responsible for their own poverty, but also those in economically advanced societies who refused to embrace an exploitative work ethic could be represented as racially/culturally/morally inferior. My research covers the history of laziness as a vice from its emergence in early modernity to the triumph of industrial societies.

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