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Care as Labor, Care as Infrastructure

Nov 8, 2021



Time of Event:

Monday 12:15 - 1:30 ET

This is the first event in a year-long co-sponsored series between the LPE Project and the Global Health Justice Partnership on health, social reproduction, and the crisis of care: “Reimagining the Political Economy of Care.”

Care as Labor, Care as Infrastructure”

When the Biden Administration included care in its proposals for new infrastructure spending, it triggered a national debate about care work, and whether it should, or should not, be understood as “infrastructure.” Not unrelatedly, care work has become central to two of the biggest political issues of our time – claims for healthcare access, and the future of labor organizing, which is increasingly focused on the service sector, and the women of color and immigrants who disproportionately support the care sector.  

What is care and where do arguments about the centrality of care work to the modern economy, as well as to health and the labor movement, come from?  Does it make sense to think of care as “infrastructure” – and how does that relate to the idea that care is work? This panel will ground the “infrastructure” debate by bringing some of the most preeminent historical and legal  theorists of care work together. It also will also discuss how the law has operated to marginalize and coerce care, and how it might be reformed to provide power and protections for care workers, and those they care for. 


Peggie Smith

Gabriel Winant

Haeyoung Yoon

Amy Kapczynski (moderator)