This article examines competing and converging discourses on the value of labor in rural Kyrgyzstan. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork conducted between 2006 and 2010, Iuse case studies of a woman pastoralist, an agricultural entrepreneur, and a Muslimcleric to demonstrate the competing frames of valuation that current work practices areoriented towards. I show how these frames of valuation are situated in the complex historyof work in postsocialist Central Asia. The article demonstrates that formally distinctand conflicting ideologies such as socialist and capitalist ideas of labor, concepts ofservice to kin, and Islamic practice all converge in their emphasis on the moral value ofhard work. I show that the main distinction made about different forms and evaluationsof work is the kind of collectivity that the labor contributes to. These distinctions allowa greater understanding of the work choices and judgments Kyrgyzstani citizens make,as well as revealing work as an important nexus of personhood.