The creative precariat is the target of representations, elaborated by social scientists or other authors. Yet, little attention is dedicated to subjective appropriations of critical discourses on cultural work and precariousness. The author investigates this question in the Paris metropolis. Over the years 2008-2011, he conducted more than fifty interviews in Paris with individuals who carried artistic or intellectual activities and did not benefit from the backing of a steady employment contract. Interviews were focused on their working-lives, and on their conceptions regarding collective entities to which they could belong. Among these, a minority referred to a category popularized a few years before by an essay: the «intellos précaires». The article shows how these precarious cultural workers invest the category, but also distanciate themselves from it and from the kind of precarity politics it contains.
Keywords: Precariat, knowledge work, identification, professional identity