Work and workforce

Snowcrab provides a better definition:

I don’t agree that work can be defined as something you don’t want to do. I think work is any activity that somehow produces resources to sustain and maintain life, whether you like doing it or not.

Space Bunny and I were talking about this subsequent to reading about fifty of the comments yesterday, and we reached a conclusion very similar to this. It is somewhat ironic, in that the discussion has mutated and it can certainly be argued that prostitution is an economic activity that produces resources to sustain and maintain life, but I don’t think there’s any argument that prostitution is a rather unusual sort of work.

My thinking about housework, raising the children and washing the car is that no matter how clean you keep your house, your car and your laundry, you will die if that’s all you do. The subsistenance farmer feeds his family, the hunter feeds his family while the gatherer feeds hers, so does the cubicle jock.

What I found interesting about the New York Times article yesterday was that it revealed how many women much prefer prostituting themselves over more conventional forms of work. It reminded of how the most sought after career in a mid-90’s poll of Russian high school seniors was “hard currency prostitute”. And if you look at the fame and celebrity of porn stars in our own culture, I’m betting that there’s a significant minority who would prefer Jenna Jamison’s job to working in an office. When the porn stars are prettier than the Hollywood actresses, it’s readily apparent that there is no shortage of supply.

I’m not sure precisely what the significance of this is, but it does run directly counter to nearly everything that is crammed down our throats in the schools and media, where we’re taught that women just want the same opportunities as men. If you’d rather hook or provide escort services than take advantage of the metaphorical 40 acres and a mule, you’re living in a very different headspace than the average guy. Perhaps it’s still “working” but there is a qualitative difference nevertheless.