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France, 2019

Production : Créadoc

Programmed by Jenny Cartwright


Audio documentary


To have the right to live by “earning a living” as one earns salvation, to “convert” as one would to a religion, to “get promoted” and rise to the heavens… Yes, but beneath our work, our lives are lived. Colette, Anaïs, and Manuel deliver a story about the physical, psychological, and social marks left on us by our work, and what that says about our living conditions today. Here, we find no careers in prestigious jobs, but a struggle to survive though not necessarily to live. A class struggle. Three singular voices, with feelings not far from those that ignited the anger of the Yellow Vests (Gilets jaunes).

A word from Tënk

In a documentary that shines a light on the working conditions of people for whom class struggle is not an idea to be found in books, Colette, Anaïs et Manuel tell the story of the dispossession caused by jobs where one gets hurt, both literally and figuratively.



We follow their daily lives across abrupt awakenings and long and costly trajectories that illustrate the sounds of their labour: the vacuum, the keys required for opening store doors while owners are still sleeping, the merchandise that they pack and move, all the while asking, how much more time we can hold on for. Their words echo the Yellow Vests protests (Gilets jaunes) against the neoliberal policies of Emmanuel Macron’s government that were taking place at the time.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the violence of these jobs–which are small only in terms of pay and the consideration that we afford to those who do them–this is far from being a recent phenomenon. As Anaïs says, “Maybe one day everything will fall apart. It will all be too much and it won't work anymore. Then we'll be able to start over on a sound footing."






Jenny Cartwright
Documentarian and audio artist




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