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Social Theory of the Platform: Focusing on Platform Capitalism and Algorithmic Governmentality

Kim Hong Jung | Seoul National University


This article attempts at making an approach to the theoretical impacts of the advent of platform society on the social theories, from two major perspectives. First theme concerns the platform capitalism, on the subject of which this article presents the following three theses. i) thesis of social factory(platform capitalism incorporates the non-market vital activities into the labor), ii) thesis of asocial social(the rise of the social in the platform society reassembles the society), iii) thesis of dissolution of the spirit(in the platform capitalism, the spirit disappears). Second theme concerns the algorithms. This article introduces the discussions of Scott Lash on the ‘techhnological forms of life’ caused by the acquisition of power of algorithm and those of Antoinette Rouvroy on the algorithmic governmentality suggesting that 21st century governmentality pivots around a novel constellation of the real, the knowldege, and the subjectivity.


affective labor, algorithm, the social, capitalist spirit, governmentality, platform society

Society and Theory, 2022, vol., no.41, pp. 7-48

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