Becoming a character for commerce: Emotion Labor, Self-Subordination, and Discursive Construction of Identity in a Total Institution

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191 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study of cruise ship activities’ directors analyzes emotion labor, self-subordination, and discursive construction of identity in the context of a total institution. It opens with a review of social theories of emotion and emotion work and Foucauldian concepts of power and identity. The case, based on fieldnotes, documents, and interview data, analyzes (a) the arbitrary nature of emotion rules; (b) the dispersion of emotion control among supervisors, passengers, peers, and the self; (c) employee self-subordination and privatization of burnout; and (d) identity as coconstituted through resistance and consent to emotion labor norms. The article concludes with a discussion of theoretical and practical implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)90-128
Number of pages39
JournalManagement Communication Quarterly
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Strategy and Management

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