Theories of (Management ?) Fashion: the Contributions of Veblen, Simmel, Blumer, and Bourdieu
Recent fashion phenomena in the field of management have received growing attention by scholars and management practitioners alike. Much of the existing management fashion literature however operates without providing a clear conceptual and theoritical fonction. It tends to build on common-sense notions of fashion and overlooks the significant contributions in the sociological tradition of fashion theorizing. This paper aims at making a contributions to closing the "theory gap" in the discussion of management fashion by presenting four of the major contributions to the sociological tradition of fashion theorizing. First, I briefly outline the fashion writings of Veblen, Blumer, Simmel, and Bourdieux. I then try to integrate the different theoretical positions in a discussion of fashion's double role for social change as well as for reproduction of social structures. In the third section, I try outline, which elements from the sociological fashion theories outlined in this paper should be included in the recent discussion of management fashion.
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