Advertisement

Affectual Demands and the Creative Worker: Experiencing Selves and Emotions in the Creative Organisation

  • Iva Josefsson
Chapter
Part of the Dynamics of Virtual Work book series (DVW)

Abstract

Creative workers are increasingly called upon to engage affectually with their work through discourses that demand a love or passion for one’s work. In an organisational setting, these discourses can collapse the distance between selves and work, heightening the sense of personal meaningfulness derived from work. However, these discourses can also be used to discipline an organisationally desirable committed and engaged worker, disable workers’ attempts at distancing themselves. Studying the experiences of workers at a video game development studio, this chapter shows the affectual demands on workers and the difficulties of drawing boundaries between self and work. Rather than resulting in purely rewarding moments of personal meaningfulness, workers express feelings of pain, resentment, frustration, fear, anger, anxiety, and insecurity, regarding the relation between themselves and their work.

References

  1. Alvesson, M. (1994). Talking in organizations: Managing identity and impressions in an advertising agency. Organization Studies, 15(4), 535–563.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alvesson, M., & Willmott, H. (2002). Identity regulation as organizational control: Producing the appropriate individual. Journal of Management Studies, 39(5), 621–644.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Andersen, N. Å., & Born, A. W. (2008). The employee in the sign of love. Culture and Organization, 14(4), 325–343.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bailey, C., & Madden, A. (2017). Time reclaimed: Temporality and the experience of meaningful work. Work, Employment and Society, 31(1), 3–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Banks, M. (2007). The politics of cultural work. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bojesen, A., & Muhr, S. L. (2008). In the name of love: Let’s remember desire. Ephemera, 8(1), 79–93.Google Scholar
  7. Boltanski, L., & Chiapello, E. (2005). The new spirit of capitalism. London: Verso.Google Scholar
  8. Boussebaa, M., & Brown, A. D. (2017). Englishization, identity regulation and imperialism. Organization Studies, 38(1), 7–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Brown, A. D., Kornberger, M., Clegg, S. R., & Carter, C. (2010). ‘Invisible walls’ and ‘silent hierarchies’: A case study of power relations in an architecture firm. Human Relations, 63(4), 525–549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Casey, C. (1995). Work, self and society: After industrialism. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  11. Caves, R. E. (2000). Creative industries: Contracts between art and commerce. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Coupland, C., Brown, A. D., Daniels, K., & Humphreys, M. (2008). Saying it with feeling: Analysing speakable emotions. Human Relations, 61(3), 327–353.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Du Gay, P. (1996). Consumption and identity at work. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.Google Scholar
  14. Endrissat, N., Islam, G., & Noppeney, C. (2015). Enchanting work: New spirits of service work in an organic supermarket. Organization Studies, 36(11), 1555–1576.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Fleming, P. (2014). Resisting work: The corporatization of life and its discontents. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  16. Fleming, P., & Sturdy, A. (2010). ‘Being yourself’ in the electronic sweatshop: New forms of normative control. Human Relations, 64(2), 177–200.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Gill, R., & Pratt, A. (2008). In the social factory? Immaterial labour, precariousness and cultural work. Theory, Culture & Society, 25(7–8), 1–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gregg, M. (2011). Work’s intimacy. Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  19. Hanlon, G. (2017). Digging deeper towards capricious management: ‘Personal traits become part of the means of production’. Human Relations, 70(2), 168–184.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Heelas, P. (2002). Work ethics, soft capitalism and the ‘turn to life’. In P. D. Gay & M. Pryke (Eds.), Cultural economy. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.Google Scholar
  21. Hesmondhalgh, D., & Baker, S. (2008). Creative work and emotional labour in the television industry. Theory, Culture & Society, 25(7–8), 97–118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hesmondhalgh, D., & Baker, S. (2011). Creative labour: Media work in three cultural industries. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Hochschild, A. R. (1983). The managed heart: Commercialization of human feeling. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  24. Howkins, J. (2013). The creative economy: How people make money from ideas (2nd ed.). London: Penguin Books.Google Scholar
  25. Kunda, G. (1992). Engineering culture: Control and commitment in high tech corporation. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Lingo, E. L., & Tepper, S. J. (2013). Looking back, looking forward: Arts-based careers and creative work. Work and Occupations, 40(4), 337–363.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. McRobbie, A. (1998). British fashion design: Rag trade or image industry. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Menger, P. M. (2014). The economics of creativity. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Miller, P., & Rose, N. (1990). Governing economic life. Economy and Society, 19(1), 1–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Negus, K., & Pickering, M. J. (2004). Creativity, communication and cultural value. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.Google Scholar
  31. Ross, A. (2008). The new geography of work: Power to the precarious? Theory, Culture & Society, 25(7–8), 31–49.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Taylor, S. (2010). Negotiating oppositions and uncertainties: Gendered conflicts in creative identity work. Feminism & Psychology, 21(3), 354–371.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Taylor, S. (2015). A new mystique? Working for yourself in the neoliberal economy. The Sociological Review, 63(1), 174–187.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Taylor, S., & Littleton, K. (2013). Contemporary identities of creativity and creative work. Surrey: Ashgate Publishing Ltd.Google Scholar
  35. Thompson, P., Parker, R., & Cox, S. (2016). Interrogating creative theory and creative work: Inside the games studio. Sociology, 50(2), 316–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Thrift, N. (2005). Knowing capitalism. London: SAGE Publications Ltd.Google Scholar
  37. Wetherell, M. (2015). Trends in the turn to affect: A social psychological critique. Body and Society, 21(2), 139–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Iva Josefsson
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.University of BathBathUK
  2. 2.Lund UniversityLundSweden

Personalised recommendations