Cis women's bodies at work: co‐modification and (in)visibility in organization and management studies and menopause at work scholarship

Beck, Vanessa; Brewis, Jo; Davies, Andrea and Matheson, Jesse (0202). Cis women's bodies at work: co‐modification and (in)visibility in organization and management studies and menopause at work scholarship. International Journal of Management Reviews, 25(3) pp. 495–514.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/ijmr.12318

Abstract

This paper reviews research on cis women's bodily self‐discipline in the workplace. We compare literature exemplifying the ‘bodily turn’ in organization and management studies to scholarship on menopause at work, to identify key themes across these oeuvres and the significance of the blind spots in each. There is little overlap between them: only eleven organization and management studies publications dealt with menopause. In classifying these literatures using Forbes’ (2009) concept of co‐modification, we distil four themes: bodily moulding; non‐disclosure; failing; and resistance, redefinition and reclamation. Based on this, we argue for more substantive considerations of menopause in organization and management studies, and suggest what the organization and management literature has to offer its sister scholarship. For example, we foreground how menopause exacerbates the visibility paradox facing female workers which organization and management studies identifies; and argue that menopause at work scholarship should pay more attention to specific bodily accommodations, refusals and the ‘unscripted’ aspects of menopause in organizations.

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