“Work is supposed to bring us fulfilment, pleasure, meaning, even joy,” writes Sarah Jaffe in her book, Work Won’t Love You Back. “The admonishment of a thousand inspirational social media posts to ‘do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life’ has become folk wisdom,” she continues.

Such platitudes suggest an essential truth “stretching back to our caveperson ancestors”. But these fallacies create “stress, anxiety and loneliness”. In short, the “labour of love … is a con”. This is the starting point of Jaffe’s book, which goes on to show how the myth permeates diverse jobs and sectors...

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