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To play or not to play: That is the question: Entrepreneuring as gendered play
Stockholm University, Sweden.
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Business Administration. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Linköping University, HELIX Vinn Excellence Centre.
2015 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Management, ISSN 0956-5221, Vol. 31, no 2, 206-218 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

How can play be used to unravel the discourse of the gendered hero entrepreneur and instead describe mundane entrepreneuring? Further, how can the doing of gendered social orders be problematized when entrepreneuring is equated with play? In this article we answer these questions by engaging with the French social theorist Caillois (1961) conceptualization of play as being at the heart of all higher culture. Two ethnographic cases act as our vehicle in analysing play as entrepreneuring. From a rich description of these cases we find that it is not a question of playing or not playing, but about how to play. All four forms of play described by Caillois are present, which illustrates the variation of entrepreneuring and the richness of activities conducted in the doing of entrepreneurship. Further, both ways of playing discussed by Caillois are found. Whilst these two ways are interrelated on a continuum in the theory of play, they have been separated in entrepreneurship discourse, where they underpin the tendency to differentiate between the hero entrepreneur and ordinary people. Finally, we engage in a more interpretive and reflective discussion on entrepreneuring as performative acts through which social orders can be not only reproduced but also transformed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier , 2015. Vol. 31, no 2, 206-218 p.
Keyword [en]
Entrepreneuring; Play; Gender; Ethnography; Ways and forms of play
National Category
Economics and Business
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-119796DOI: 10.1016/j.scaman.2014.10.001ISI: 000355895200004OAI: diva2:827252

Funding Agencies|Knowledge Foundation; Swedish Science Foundation

Available from: 2015-06-26 Created: 2015-06-26 Last updated: 2015-06-26

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Tillmar, Malin
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Business AdministrationFaculty of Arts and SciencesHELIX Vinn Excellence Centre
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ReferencesLink to record
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