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
Chapter 7: Consuming Organization
In Chapter 6 I attempted to show how certain categories of person are ‘made up’ at work in contemporary retailing by examining the new rationality of government operative within the industry. I argued that the internal world of the retail enterprise is being re-imagined through the discourse of enterprise as a place where customers' needs are to be satisfied, productivity is to be improved, quality service guaranteed, flexibility enhanced and creative innovation fostered through the active engagement of the self-fulfilling impulses of all the organization's members. I suggested that through a variety of representations, technologies and practices the programmatic aspirations of senior management personnel within the retail industry were being translated into new ways for people to be at work. Increasingly, store ...