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12, 13 Mario Tronti’s Operai e capitale (1966) was the seminal book of Operaismo and the main source for 1970s Autonomia movements. It was published at the end of Classe operaia’s existence, when Tronti considered the political experiment of the journal to be at risk of becoming a marginal avant-garde initiative rather than an agent of real politics. In this book Tronti republished his interventions in Quaderni rossi and Classe operaia, adding a new section on the central theme of his research: “Marx, Labor Force, Working Class.” The book consists of three parts. The first includes essays published in the socialist journal Mondoperaio and in Quaderni rossi; it deals with the rediscovery of Marx beyond Marxism and the process of integration of society within the productive space of capitalism. The second part includes the polemical texts published in

Classe operaia and addresses questions of political organization of the new working class. The third part focuses on relations among the working class as theorized in Marx, the nature of its power as a labor force, and its political constitution as an autonomous class with its own interests. Here the concept of autonomy reaches its most radical conclusion: in order to take power, the working class must refuse not capitalism but capital’s most essential premise, work itself. In a revised edition of 1971, Tronti added a section on the struggles of the American working class, seen as more advanced than its European counterpart by virtue of being devoid of ideology. After Operaismo, Tronti further radicalized his position in his studies on working-class politics, summarizing his argument in the book Sull’autonomia del politico (1977), based on a seminar delivered in 1972.

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The Project of Autonomy: Politics and Architecture Within and Against Capitalism  

The Project of Autonomy radically rediscusses the concept of autonomy in politics and architecture by tracing a concise and polemical argume...

The Project of Autonomy: Politics and Architecture Within and Against Capitalism  

The Project of Autonomy radically rediscusses the concept of autonomy in politics and architecture by tracing a concise and polemical argume...

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