Article i 'Tidsskrift for arbejdsliv' no. 1 2007, page 28-43.
Steffen Korsgaard og Helle Neergaard
In this article it is discussed to what extent
entrepreneurship can be a way to
achieve work life balance. This is done by
examining the traditional social science discourse
on entrepreneurship, exemplified by
Joseph Schumpeter, and the emergent mompreneurship
discourse. The traditional discourse
is characterised by a focus on growth
both at the macroeconomic and business
level, while work life balance is at the centre
of the mompreneurship discourse.
The discourses are analysed using Foucault inspired discourse analysis focusing on the discursive formation of objects, subject position, concepts and strategies. Two strategic motives are identified in Schumpeter’s discourse: Transcendence and domination. The entrepreneur thus seeks independence, autonomy and separation from the ties of social connectedness, as well as dominance over resources, competition and himself. On the other hand the strategic motive found in the mompreneurship discourse, namely connectedness, emphasises opposite values such as balance and congruence between different areas of life (family and work life), and continuity rather than separation.
Given the hegemonic nature of the traditional social science discourse, mompreneurship is only potentially a threat to the current general view of entrepreneurship, and nothing seems to indicate that mompreneurship discourse is on the verge of public and political recognition. But there is significant emancipatory potential in the discourse that hopefully can be fully developed.