The realms of consumption have typically been seen to be distinct from those of work and production. This book examines how contemporary rhetorics and discourses of organizational change are breaking down such distinctions - with significant implications for the construction of subjectivities and identities at work. In particular, Paul du Gay shows how the capacities and predispositions required of consumers and those required of employees are increasingly difficult to distinguish. Both consumers and employees are represented as autonomous, responsible, calculating individuals. They are constituted as such in the language of consumer cultures and the all-pervasive discourses of enterprise whereby persons are required to be

Re-Imagining Organizational Identities

Re-imagining organizational identities

In Chapter 5 I argued that the struggle for market share within contemporary British retailing is increasingly articulated as a battle for the imagination and loyalty of the enterprising consumer. In attempting to stay ‘close to the customer’ – to achieve an organic ‘emotional’ and ‘physical’ proximity – retailers are simultaneously making up new ways for people to be both ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ the workplace. Interventions aimed at, and constituting, the subjectivity of the enterprising consumer have repercussions for the ways in which the work-based subject of retailing is produced and regulated. In other words, in contemporary British retailing, production and consumption relations and identities are increasingly dislocated.

In the following two chapters I draw upon my own empirical research in ...

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