This essay honors Lyman Tower Sargent’s cumulative work on utopian genres by offering a brief provocation about genre in general. Beneath the evolving faces of uto-pianism, it proposes that we focus on a different aspect of genre: the indeterminate number n of embodied labors at particular sites and times where people applied the conceptual and material tools at hand to the work of interacting with particular aspects of lived experience. It argues that much of the work of genre—the work of genre deploying, genre undoing, genre becoming, or genre aspiring to become—happens at unique sites of labor, past, present, and future. Following McKenzie Wark, it refers to this as a labor point of view toward genre.
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