Keep the machine running: Entrepreneurship as practice of control in the neoliberal economy

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Abstract

The chapter analyses current entrepreneurial discourses as practices of control in the neoliberal economy. Rather than praising entrepreneurship, we argue that entrepreneurship destroys the public spaces in which people enact themselves as political actors. The entrepreneur is an important figure in the current neoliberal ethos embedded in economic policies. This ethos captures an order of reason where all dimensions of life are formulated in terms of economic value. Humans are reframed into human capitals. Self-interest, individuality and the continuous pursuit of economic gain are thus accompanied by deregulations, suspensions of rights, lowering of wages and new affective managerial policies. Instead of representing incentives for entrepreneurship, we argue that these transformations destroy or promote unjust modes of entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship needs rethinking as conditioned on a relational, collective space that afford action. The current discourse on entrepreneurship works contrary to action by pushing more and more people into precarious and unstable situations.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgainst Entrepreneurship : A Critical Examination
EditorsAnders Ragnar Örtenblad
Number of pages20
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Publication date1 Dec 2020
Pages57-76
Chapter4
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-47936-7
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-47937-4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020

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