What is work? Key insights from the psychodynamics of work

Jean Philippe Deranty*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


This article aims to present some of the main results of contemporary French psychodynamics of work. The writings of Christophe Dejours constitute the central references in this area. His psychoanalytical approach, which is initially concerned with the impact of contemporary work practices on individual health, has implications that go well beyond the narrow psycho-pathological interest. The most significant theoretical development to have come out of Dejours's research is that of Yves Clot, whose writings will constitute the second reference point in this article. The article attempts to demonstrate that the thick definition of work that Dejours and Clot operate with, as a result of their focus on its psychological function, speaks directly, in substantial and critical ways, to all disciplines with an interest in work, to philosophers, social theorists and social scientists, including economic theorists.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-87
Number of pages19
JournalThesis Eleven
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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