What counts as ‘work’ in societies is a matter of dispute. This paper treats such disagreements as part of broader struggles over economic legitimacy wherein people use language persuasively to make accounts of their own and others’ activities. It briefly introduces activities around which these struggles have developed, and argues that these rhetorical interventions into public life appeal to, and try to affect, an audience’s common sense of their social world. The paper places emphasis on the ways in which building and rejecting analogies between different activities can be an important part of this process of persuasion.
Ikaros: Tidskrift Om Människan Och Vetenskapen, 2011, Vol 8, Issue 4, p. 9-11