S+ Stimulant: End of Work
See Ken. See Ken’s Pop. See Ken’s Mom. See Ken’s pals. It’s 1950, and they’ve got the world — or at least an afternoon of it — at their feet. The potential energy is palpable, the product of acknowledged free will and unstructured time.
In his 1995 book, The End of Work, Jeremy Rifkin presciently predicted that the evolution and extreme propagation of technology would increasingly automatize the workforce. At his theoretical end point, humans, for the first time in history, would be free of work as we know it, leading to social transformation and a rebirth of the human spirit.
11 years after Rifkin and 66 years after Ken, technological evolution continues to minimize the work necessary to accomplish tasks both in our professional and personal lives. Whether we see them as such, humans are presented with more and more open, unclaimed hours.
It’s an exciting prospect, a destabilizing prospect, perhaps even a paralyzing prospect. But regardless, Rifkin’s theory and Ken’s realizations beg the question: what would you do with all that free time?
If you acknowledge your free will and recognize unstructured time, how would you spend your minutes, your hours, your days?
M.U & L.N. 2016
Published: April 28th, 2016