For women in contemporary corporate life, negotiating and performing a “professional” identity is a process requiring much time, energy, and self-surveillance. Yet, many women feel compelled to undertake this project despite the challenges it poses. These women often turn to popular success literature for strategies to help them craft and enact successful identities. In this essay, we analyze the popular success literature and compare its prescriptions for success with the voices of actual, successful career women. We explore the paradoxes and contradictions within and across these discourses in our efforts to deconstruct masculine constructions/performances of professionalism.
- Gender identity
- Organizational performance
- Success literature
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts
- Literature and Literary Theory