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Exploring the false promise of entrepreneurship through a postfeminist critique of the enterprise policy discourse in Sweden and the UK
Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, HLK, Lifelong learning/Encell.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9367-7472
University of Birmingham, United Kingdom.
2019 (English)In: Human Relations, ISSN 0018-7267, E-ISSN 1741-282XArticle in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Contemporary theories of neoliberalism and entrepreneurship are entwined; both hinge upon the use of agency within free markets to realize individual potential, enhance status and attain material rewards. Postfeminism, as a discrete but related discourse, suggests this context is conducive to encouraging women to draw upon their agency, skills and personal profile to enhance achievements and returns. We draw from these related, but discrete discourses, when critically analysing how postfeminist assumptions shape Swedish and UK government policies aimed at expanding women’s entrepreneurship. Despite differing historical antecedents regarding state engagement with equality and welfare regimes, we illustrate how postfeminist assumptions have infiltrated policy initiatives in both cases. This infiltration has, we suggest, suppressed criticisms that in a context of persistent structural discrimination, lack of welfare benefits and contrived aspirational role models, entrepreneurship constitutes a poor career choice for many women. Consequently, we challenge the value of contemporary policy initiatives encouraging more women to enter entrepreneurship.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2019.
Keywords [en]
entrepreneurship, equality, gender, policy, postfeminism, achievement, adult, article, case report, clinical article, decision making, female, government, human, market, reward, skill, Sweden, welfare
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-45050DOI: 10.1177/0018726719848480Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85066844809Local ID: ;HLKLivslångtISOAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-45050DiVA, id: diva2:1329996
Available from: 2019-06-25 Created: 2019-06-25 Last updated: 2019-06-25

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Ahl, Helene

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf