Peasant Labour

From capitalistManifesto

Peasant Labour is a euphemism for non-academic manual or unskilled human work. Peasant because it's work done by the poor and lowest 'class' in society. Labour because it tends to be manual, physical work - demanding of the body rather than monetizing the work of the mind.


The primary (first) sector of an economy includes any industry involved in the extraction and production of raw materials, such as farming, logging, hunting, fishing, and mining. Oil and gas extraction are primary sector industries. Oil and gas business post-extraction is no longer primary sector.

The primary sector tends to make up a larger portion of the economy in developing countries than it does in developed countries. For example, in 2018, agriculture, forestry, and fishing comprised more than 15% of GDP in Sub-Saharan Africa but less than 1% of GDP in North America.[1]

In developed countries the primary sector has become more technologically advanced, enabling for example the mechanization of farming, as compared with hand-picking and hand-planting in poorer countries.

More developed economies may invest additional capital in primary means of production: for example, in the United States corn belt, combine harvesters pick the corn, and sprayers spray large amounts of insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides, producing a higher yield than is possible using less capital-intensive techniques. These technological advances and investments allow the primary sector to employ a smaller workforce, so developed countries tend to have a smaller percentage of their workforce involved in primary activities, instead of having a higher percentage involved in the secondary and tertiary sectors.[2]


  1. Peasant Labour - "raw materials" via extraction, mining, agriculture, farming, livestock
  2. Blue Collar - "manufacturing" via industrial processing, construction, engineering, turning raw materials into finished products
  3. Rentseekers - "services" via supply chains, support, transport, distribution, retail, wholesale, entertainment, value-added services
  4. White Collar - "information technology" via computing, media, research and development, financiers, science, civil service
  5. Gold Collar - "executive apex" via government, large charities, CEO and CTOs, senior businessmen, research scientists, barristers, judges and other decision makers defining policy impacting lives at scale


  1. World Bank Data
  2. H Dwight H. Perkins: Proceedings of the Academy of Political Science, Vol. 31, No. 1, China's Developmental Experience (March 1973)