Actuality, genealogy and ideology of the factory of happiness at work


Through a dialogue between philosophy, sociology, management theory and human relations theory, economics and labour sciences (ergonomics, psychology and occupational psychology), this contribution pays philosophical attention to the use of instruments (interviews and statistical surveys) and ideological vectors (motivation theories, positive psychology, new hygienics, managerial optimism, injunctive hedonism) for the production of happiness at work. It is based on an analysis of the conceptualizations of well-being and quality of life at work, in the service of a competitive life, which have followed one another from the beginning of the 20th century to the present day. Its guiding principle is to decipher the normative and ethical foundations, as well as the power logics and decoys on which the government of men is based by the promise of happiness.