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Lifestyle enterprising: the "ambiguity work" of Swedish horse-farmers

Andersson Cederholm, Erika LU (2014) In Community, Work and Family 18(3). p.317-333
Abstract
The article introduces the concept of ambiguity work as a specific form of work-life balancing performed when making a livelihood based on leisure interests and a personal lifestyle. The study focuses on female self-employed horse-farmers in Sweden involved in service work with and through horses. Through an analysis of narratives and practices of this service work, based on ethnographic interviews and observations, boundary negotiations of various social spheres are discernible: Work and life, and the commercial and the personal. The analysis shows that the horse-farmers perform a delicate and ongoing balancing act between family interests, individual leisure and paid work. Drawing on the notion of sociological ambivalence, it is... (More)
The article introduces the concept of ambiguity work as a specific form of work-life balancing performed when making a livelihood based on leisure interests and a personal lifestyle. The study focuses on female self-employed horse-farmers in Sweden involved in service work with and through horses. Through an analysis of narratives and practices of this service work, based on ethnographic interviews and observations, boundary negotiations of various social spheres are discernible: Work and life, and the commercial and the personal. The analysis shows that the horse-farmers perform a delicate and ongoing balancing act between family interests, individual leisure and paid work. Drawing on the notion of sociological ambivalence, it is suggested that this balancing act does not strive for demarcations, but rather to stay betwixt-and-between social spheres. It is argued that lifestyle enterprising is enacted and confirmed through ongoing boundary negotiations, or ambiguity work, that sustains a tension between keeping and blurring social boundaries. It is further argued that ambiguity work in this type of lifestyle enterprising both reinforces and questions ideals and norms concerning small business management and professional versus non-professional relationships. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
gender, horse-farm, boundary negotiations, sociological ambivalence, work-life balance
in
Community, Work and Family
volume
18
issue
3
pages
317 - 333
publisher
Taylor & Francis
external identifiers
  • scopus:84933673395
ISSN
1366-8803
DOI
10.1080/13668803.2014.933091
project
Hästgården - mellan familjeprojekt och livsstilsföretage
Den kommersiella vänskapens pris - sociala förhandlingar om värde i upplevelseekonomin
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
b8c561f5-2cbc-4ba0-845e-3d6eabb4af7d (old id 4559904)
date added to LUP
2014-07-28 14:11:09
date last changed
2017-10-22 03:29:15
@article{b8c561f5-2cbc-4ba0-845e-3d6eabb4af7d,
  abstract     = {The article introduces the concept of ambiguity work as a specific form of work-life balancing performed when making a livelihood based on leisure interests and a personal lifestyle. The study focuses on female self-employed horse-farmers in Sweden involved in service work with and through horses. Through an analysis of narratives and practices of this service work, based on ethnographic interviews and observations, boundary negotiations of various social spheres are discernible: Work and life, and the commercial and the personal. The analysis shows that the horse-farmers perform a delicate and ongoing balancing act between family interests, individual leisure and paid work. Drawing on the notion of sociological ambivalence, it is suggested that this balancing act does not strive for demarcations, but rather to stay betwixt-and-between social spheres. It is argued that lifestyle enterprising is enacted and confirmed through ongoing boundary negotiations, or ambiguity work, that sustains a tension between keeping and blurring social boundaries. It is further argued that ambiguity work in this type of lifestyle enterprising both reinforces and questions ideals and norms concerning small business management and professional versus non-professional relationships.},
  author       = {Andersson Cederholm, Erika},
  issn         = {1366-8803},
  keyword      = {gender,horse-farm,boundary negotiations,sociological ambivalence,work-life balance},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {07},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {317--333},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {Community, Work and Family},
  title        = {Lifestyle enterprising: the "ambiguity work" of Swedish horse-farmers},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13668803.2014.933091},
  volume       = {18},
  year         = {2014},
}