This chapter explores the relationship between work and values by looking closely at the work of two founding fathers: Adam Smith and Karl Marx. Despite their central contributions, these authors promoted a unilateral conception of ethics in the workplace. Everything changes, however, if one accepts the Weberian theory of “value polytheism” - which describes the diversity of convictions in advanced modernity - bearing in mind that values are not set in stone and, above all, that they conflict with each other in all areas of social life, including work. The chapter then formalises the theoretical approach presented in the book, by differentiating between “spheres” (Micha'l Walzer), “scales” (Fraser) and “frames” of justice, and insisting on plurality.
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