Music (as) Labour: Crises and Solidarities among Greek Musicians in the Pandemic

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The study of music (as) labour has often been hindered in musicology by divisions between professional and amateur musicians as well as conflicting conceptualizations of work or pleasure. In contrast, with this article I propose that we regard all music making activity as labour. Through theorizations of affective, emotional, aesthetic and phatic labour, I highlight the different elements of work manifesting within music conduct. Then, through the case study of musicians in Greece, the article examines how music work is impacted by cumulative crises: Firstly the economic crisis of the previous decade and consequently the global pandemic. In this process, I trace an awakening of collectivism that puts forward the demand for the recognition of music (and other performing arts) as work, and particularly as a labour of love.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-27
JournalSwiss Journal of Musicology
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2022


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