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Play, Work and the Modern Sense of Self - with Norman Crump

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk


Our commentary revolves around the ways in which play is used in contemporary managerial ideologies. Has managerialism become seriously embroiled in a kind of ‘Dionysian’ mode (especially in the so-called ‘West’, but not only) which cultivates a spirit of playful transgression and destruction of boundaries between ‘play’ and ‘work’? Is it mere froth, ‘mumbo-jumbo’ (as Francis Wheen called it in 2004), or ‘gobbledygook’ (as Don Watson preferred)? Or is it a sign of reconfigured bonds between the economic grammars of production and consumption, and the cultural grammars of the modern self? We will endeavour to open up a discussion of such questions with a certain kind of historical-cultural commentary of managerialism over the last two decades or so.

External organisation

NameEssex Business School, University of Essex