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Narratives of fate and misfortune in organizational life: stories of success and failure

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/12/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Culture and Organization
Issue number5
Volume20
Number of pages20
Pages (from-to)410-429
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date21/10/14
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

In this paper, we discuss how both success and failure induce anxiety, and how narratives help defend against it. We argue, using a psychoanalytic approach, that these narratives become culturally embedded through sharing and approval, and they become available as resources that are often drawn upon unconsciously when faced with anxiety-provoking experiences. Empirically, we draw upon data about Indian employees in India. The Indian cultural context offers rich insights into the interrelatedness of success and failure, anxiety, and narratives as defences in responses to these experiences.