Critical Theory and the Digital Culture-Industry

Audience-Work, Serious Leisure, and Recognition
  • Moshe ElhanatiEmail author


The emergence of millions of amateurs and unpaid works on the web during the blooming of social media and the rise of sharing discourse over the past decade has resulted in a large corpus of criticism on both academic and popular levels. Yet this corpus is primarily binary in nature: It either praises and glorifies these sharing praxes in almost messianic terms, or it criticizes them by focusing on work-leisure relations and the familiar consequences of exploiting audience work. Either way, the criticism fails to fully grasp the emancipatory potential inherent to the world of amateurs, who willfully act within the sphere of serious leisure. The article thus aims to cater to the growing need for a critical theory that neither falls into the positivistic honey trap of techno-utopian discourse, while also avoiding total negation. To this end, the article utilizes two theoretical components: serious leisure and social recognition, whose combination offers the foundations for forming an adequate critical theory.


Critical theory Web Audience-work Serious-leisure Recognition New-capitalism 


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© Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH, ein Teil von Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael

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