Policy Press


Personal lives and social policy

By Gerry Mooney


Jun 1, 2004

Page count

176 pages

Browse the series

Personal Lives and Social Policy




189 x 246 mm


Policy Press

Drawing on a range of theoretical approaches, the authors explore questions that are central to our understanding of how the personal not only is shaped in and through work, but also contributes to social relations at work. Among the issues considered are:

that emotional labour is increasingly central to the labour process of welfare work;

the changing relationship between ageing, work and personal lives;

the ways through which welfare-to-work policies seek to regulate personal lives.

The book seeks to further our understanding of the complex links between social policy and work in its different forms as well as highlighting that the dominant discourses of work have developed around particular constructions of how personal lives should be ordered. It is one in an innovative series - Personal Lives and Social Policy - published by The Open University and The Policy Press. The series comprises four interactive texts that successfully weave together new and challenging questions about the study of social policy with a range of teaching resources to support the development of the reader's own knowledge and understanding.

"It's good to see course material that engages with politically informed frameworks of thinking ... We are left in no doubt that the worlds of work, welfare and social policy constitute contested political terrain." BSA Network

" ... the book as a whole presents an evocative, provocative and coherent introduction to some of the most salient and conceptually challenging issues associated with the relationship between work, welfare and everday lives. It is a significant contribution to the literature." British Journal of Sociology

"This book draws out the complex and dynamic relationships between work - in all its manifestations - and social policy. It is thoughtful, provocative and a much-needed contribution - one which, I hope, will be read by both students and their teachers." Chris Jones, Social Policy and Social Work, University of Liverpool

Exploring the dynamics of work, personal lives and social policy Gerry Mooney: Introduction; Conceptualizing work; Work, welfare and social policy; Trends in paid work and employment since the 1950s; Class divisions and alienation at work; Conclusion; Further resources; References. Managing personal lives: doing 'welfare work' Janet Newman and Gerry Mooney: Introduction; Managing the self: welfare work and emotional labour; Working for love or loving to work? Voluntary work and social policy; Managing welfare work: welfare professionals and state restructuring; Working on the margins: modernization and its discontents; Managing the changing relationships of welfare work; Work, personal lives and social policy; Conclusion; Further resources; References; Retiring lives? Old age, work and welfare Beth Widdowson: Introduction; Making the 'house' into a 'home'? The enduring legacy of the 1834 New Poor Law; Pensions policies: the making and remaking of old age through the intersections of work and welfare; From 'OAP' to 'third age' citizen? Fractured transitions and uncertain lives; Conclusion; Further resources; References; Remaking the relations of work and welfare Ross Fergusson: Introduction; The contingent relations of welfare and work: from workhouse to workfare?; Personal agency, participation and refusal: gathering evidence; An auditor reports; Personal advisers, personal lives; A short biography of Mandy: comparing theories about work and welfare; Workfare lives: evaluating theories; Further resources; References; The shifting relations of work, welfare and personal lives Gerry Mooney: Introduction; The centrality of work in social policy; 'Family-friendly' employment and the pursuit of work-life 'balance'; Explaining the shifts: the neo-liberal agenda; Conclusion; References.