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The subject who thinks economically? Comparative money subjectivities in neoliberal context


Verdouw, JJ, The subject who thinks economically? Comparative money subjectivities in neoliberal context, Journal of Sociology, 53, (3) pp. 523-540. ISSN 1440-7833 (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2016 The Author(s)

DOI: doi:10.1177/1440783316662717


Theoretically, neoliberalism is acknowledged as a powerful, discursive mode of governmentality, whose key tenets widely influence sociological discourses around the role of money in attaining quality of life and happiness. However, few studies qualitatively reflect in any detail on how neoliberalism is implicated in the making of particular subjectivities. In this comparative study, participants from different income contexts (middle and low income, and downshifters) are interviewed about money meanings with attention to the particular ways of living they narrate. The findings attest to participant adoption of, and/or resistance to, lay forms of neoliberalism in the ordering of their subjectivities around key themes: life values, life goals, monetary boundaries and future understandings. Their stories show the prevalence of the neoliberal subject and clarify the practical limits of neoliberal discourses, as well as demonstrating how moral alternatives to neoliberalism can transform self-understanding and practice.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:downshifters, good life, low income, middle income, money, neoliberalism, qualitative research
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Sociology
Research Field:Sociology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Verdouw, JJ (Dr Julia Verdouw)
ID Code:111214
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:7
Deposited By:School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2016-09-05
Last Modified:2017-11-29

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