'Managing' Stress: Emotion and Power at Work

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SAGE, Jan 18, 1995 - 192 pages
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This volume provides a thought-provoking and timely alternative to prevailing approaches to stress at work. These invariably present stress as a 'fact of modern life' and assume it is the "individual" who must take primary responsibility for his or her capacity - or incapacity - to cope.

This book, by contrast, sets stress at work in the context of wider debates about emotion, subjectivity and power in organizations, viewing it as an emotional product of the social and political features of work and organizational life.

Tim Newton analyzes the historical development of the dominant stress discourse' in modern psychology and elsewhere. Drawing on a range of perspectives - from labour process theory to the work of Foucault and Elias - he explores other possible ways of understanding stress at work. He offers a cogent critique of the typical stress management interventions in organizations through which employees are supposed to increase their effectiveness and become stress-fit'. With contributions from two colleagues, he explores various ways of rewriting' stress at work. Together they emphasize the gendered nature of stress, the collective production and reproduction of stressful work experiences, and the relation of stress to issues of emotion management and control in organizations.

 

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Contents

From Eugenics to Work Reform
18
Labour Process
58
Seeing the Collective
85
Stress Emotion and Intervention
120
Rewriting the Stressed Subject
136
References
157
Index
171
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Page 12 - If we try now to sum up our discussion of the impact of the social and economic changes on the individual in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries we arrive at the following picture : We find the same ambiguity of freedom which we have discussed before. The individual is freed from the bondage of economic and political ties. He also gains in positive freedom by the active and independent role which he has to play in the new system. But simultaneously he is freed from those ties which used to give...

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About the author (1995)

Tim Newton was educated at Winchester College and Magdalene College, Cambridge. A classics scholar, Greek teacher, and bibliophile, he recommended and sourced books for the artist Robert Lenkiewicz's extraordinary collection, which the British Library called "one of the most important in the world." He lives on Dartmoor in England.

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