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Women Leaders, Self-Body-Care and Corporate Moderate Feminism: An [im]perfect place for feminism

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Sharon MavinORCiD



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Wiley-Blackwell, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


This paper offers Self-body-care corporate feminism as a theory which explains how postfeminism as a bodily property surfaces through women leaders’ body work. This corporate feminism explains how women ‘top’ leaders’ strategize to stabilize their credibility as leaders by identifying their own and other women’s body work needs and take steps to meet those needs. Self-body-care contributes to understandings of moderate feminism through simultaneous expressions of postfeminism and feminism, which deflect and reflect feminism and constrain and empower subjects. As such Self-body-care corporate feminism offers an [im]perfect space for disruption and for GOS scholars to pursue the implications and potential of postfeminism. We develop the theory by surfacing complexity in the postfeminist thesis and reflexively re-examining two empirical studies of women ‘top’ leaders. We extend the research into therapeutic cultures through analysis of women’s experiences and illustrate postfeminism as a bodily property within an aesthetic economy.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Mavin S, Grandy G

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Gender, Work & Organization

Year: 2019

Volume: 26

Issue: 11

Pages: 1546-1561

Print publication date: 01/11/2019

Online publication date: 14/09/2018

Acceptance date: 13/07/2018

Date deposited: 26/07/2018

ISSN (print): 0968-6673

ISSN (electronic): 1468-0432

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell


DOI: 10.1111/gwao.12292


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