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Identity threats, identity work, and elite professionals

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journal contribution
posted on 03.07.2015 by Christine Coupland, Andrew D. Brown
Elite professionals opportunistically employ threats to their work identities to author preferred selves. Predicated on understandings that identities are subjectively available to people as in-progress narratives, and that these are often insecure fabrications, we investigate the identity work of members of a UK-based professional Rugby League club. The research contribution we make is to demonstrate that professionals use identity threats as flexible resources for working on favoured identities. We show that rugby players authored identity threats centred on the shortness of their careers, injury, and performance, and how these were appropriated (made their own) by men to develop desired occupational and masculine identities. In so doing, we also contribute to debates on how professionals’ identity discourse is an expression of agency framed within relations of power.

History

School

  • Business and Economics

Department

  • Business

Published in

Organization Studies

Volume

forthcoming

Citation

COUPLAND, C. and BROWN, A.D., 2015. Identity threats, identity work, and elite professionals. Organization Studies, 36(10), pp.1315-1336.

Publisher

SAGE Publications (© the authors)

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Publication date

2015

Notes

This paper was accepted in the journal Organization Studies [© Sage] and the definitive version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0170840615593594

ISSN

1741-3044

Language

en

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