Where Real Freedom Begins

  • Luigino Bruni
Part of the Virtues and Economics book series (VIEC, volume 4)


Empires have always tried to use work to black out the dreams of freedom, gratuitousness and celebration in the souls of the workers. Exactly for it being the number one friend of man, work lends itself to be manipulated and used against workers and so it can easily become an instance of “friendly fire”. To be able to work has always been and still is one of the ways to freedom for many, while not to be able to work is still one of the main non-freedoms and a form of mass violence of our time. But next to work that liberates and makes us noble, there has always been also the idea of work used by the pharaohs as a means of oppressing the poor. Work is what opens Italian republic’s constitution, but it once also opened the Nazi “work” camps: to understand and love work we have to keep both of these “entrances” together. Today, too, we live working and we still do not prosper and are blacked out because we cannot work; but we still live and die humiliated by too much work or the wrong type of work when the new pharaohs make us work all day and every day, when they do not allow us to think, pray and celebrate holidays and so they take us back to the brick factories of Egypt.

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luigino Bruni
    • 1
  1. 1.GEPLI Department – EconomicsLibera Università Maria SS. AssuntaRomaItaly

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