Making sense of insecurity: A defence of Richard Sennett's sociology of work

Dale Tweedie*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


This article defends Richard Sennett's sociology of work under 'new capitalism' against claims that his analysis lacks empirical foundation and methodological rigour. While studies of aggregate labour market trends in recent criticisms imply that predictions of an 'end of work' or 'age of insecurity' are premature, the article demonstrates that Sennett's sociology is not committed to these predictions. Instead, his research provides a targeted critique of specific management practices and of those social transformations that share the same ethos. More constructively, Sennett's sociology articulates a unique concept of workplace insecurity and raises pressing issues in contemporary experiences of work and citizenship, rather than - as critics presuppose - in workers' contractual conditions as such.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-104
Number of pages11
JournalWork, Employment & Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013


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