What is Antiwork?
Words have different meanings in different contexts.
In physics, work means the application of force to an object in a direction. When an apple falls from a tree under the force of gravity, it is doing work, though falling wouldn’t be considered work in the usual day-to-day sense of the word, right?
In the antiwork community, work again has a specific meaning. It is labour treated as a commodity — something that we have to sell in order to earn money for food, housing, clothing, etc; in order to earn the right to live. When you cook dinner for yourself or your family, that is labour. When you are employed as a chef, that is commoditized labour or work.
The antiwork community isn’t against being productive. We’re not lazy. (Or not all of us are!) We realize that in order for society to function, labour needs to happen. What we’re against is the system where we need to sell our work to business owners in order to not die.
In medieval times, people used to work a few hours a day. With all our technology and automation, why are people working eight to ten hour days or even longer, and still barely able to afford to live? Because the system has been increasingly stacked against us. We could all be working ten to fifteen hour weeks and be living comfortably, but for that to happen, widespread reforms are necessary.