Au pays du mateship, la depolitisation est institutionnelle

Le Queux, Stephane (2012) Au pays du mateship, la depolitisation est institutionnelle. In: Sainsaulieu, Ivan, and Surdez, Muriel, (eds.) Sens politiques du travail. Armand Colin/Recherches, Paris, pp. 185-200.

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The overall ambition of this book was to address whether and in which ways the world of work still informs politics. This book chapter specifically discusses the politics of solidarity under labourism in Australia. In doing so the analysis refers to two cardinal notions underlying the social foundation of solidarity: the concepts of 'mateship' in the realm of praxis and 'fair go' in the ideological domain. It is argued that, in a rather counter-intuitive way, both notions share liberal roots. The 'fair go' relates much more to a principle of social justice, in Rawls sense, than to a holistic (and socialist) view of society. The 'mateship' concept is based on voluntarism located within a system of mutual obligations in Maussian terms. A Century ago, a foreign observer characterised Australian labour politics as 'Socialism without doctrine'. The historical institutionalisation of labourism, it is contended, has led to an over-representation of labour and, as a matter of path dependency, has also introduced a 'pragmatic' model of solidarity par défaut which is disconnected from politics; a 'solidarity without doctrine' in other words. This has multiple consequences which are discussed throughout the chapter, one of which is the rather conservative nature of labour politics in Australia. The very notion of a fair go, as the adjective 'fair' suggests, refers more to a politics of resignation (which, in turn, is subordinated to an order or a fate and, by implication, 'luck') than to a politics of emancipation. To the extent that solidarity largely relies on voluntarism, collective identities, social bonding and boundaries are defined through, and within, socialisation. Yet, however strong the socialisation may be, the limits of inclusion are also the frontiers of exclusion.

Item ID: 21944
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
Keywords: solidarity
Additional Information:

Translated/English title: The depolitisation of solidarity in Australia

Extract(in French): L'Australie offre un tableau singulier, complexe et contradictoire ou l'absence de mouvements de revendication sociale coincide avec une surrepresentation institutionnelle du travail; ou la plupart, y compris dans les rangs syndicaux dont il existe une forte composante de droite, semble aujourd'hui se satisfaire d'une gouverne social-liberale ou responsabilite individuelle et principes de solidarite se conjuguent sans trop de question: un modele qu'on pourrait qualifier de «solidarite pragmatique». Cet etat de fait a beaucoup a voir avec Ie Travaillisme, issu des luttes ouvrieres de la fin du XIX^e siecle et resultat d'un compromis politique lui conferant un monopole sur la question sociale. A la base de ce compromis se trouve Ie principe fondateur de l'economie morale du pays, le «fair go», soit un principe egalitariste qui veut que chacun ait sa chance et acces a une digne qualite de vie, pour peu qu'il s'en donne la peine, par son travail. Comme l'avait souligne Albert Metin (1901), un observateur francais de l'epoque, il s'agissait d'une sorte de «socialisme sans doctrines », rien de bien revolutionnaire.

ISBN: 978-2-200-27433-7
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2013 03:48
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1606 Political Science > 160609 Political Theory and Political Philosophy @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9599 Other Cultural Understanding > 959999 Cultural Understanding not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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