This paper invites you into a methodological and theoretical exercise, examining different ways of theorizing work identity or the subjective side of work. It has a political perspective to the general requirement for individuals to adapt flexibly to the changes of societal work, but the emphasis is on the methodological case about how subjectivities can be theorized and researched empirically in in relation to societal changes in work. A point of departure is taken in Richard Sennett’s critique of the consequences for socialisation and culture of the new capitalism. A life history interpretation of a case from research into engineers’ career and life experience is being presented, and it is argued that this analysis, by attending to specific circumstances and subjective ambivalences opens richer and more dynamic picture of subjectivity changes. The analytic approach draws on hermeneutic understanding of the specific subject(s), symbolic interactionism as well as a psychosocietal framework based in critical theory’s synthesis of Marxist and Psychoanalytical inspirations.
Corpos, Saúde, Cuidados De Si E Aprendizagens Ao Longo Da Vida: Desafios (auto)biográficos, 2012, p. 253-279
work identity; flexibilisation; engineering; life history; subjectivity