Labors of Authenticity: The Function of Spirituality and the Construction of Selfhood in the American Business
Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
Christopher White - Chair
Louis Ruprecht, Jr.
In light of claims that liberalism has led to a breakdown in society, this paper refutes these claims by examining how workplace spirituality at Starbucks Coffee impacts the identities of several employees. While others have examined workplace spirituality as a management technique, this study illustrates how it could be understood as a distinctly modern way of being religious. By linking the ethnography to recent religious trends, this study illustrates how employees are cultivating a spirituality of an inner self. Specifically, these employees accomplish three things. First, they claim to discover their true authentic self. Also, despite the alienation of modern life, workplace spirituality helps employees establish new forms of community. Third, they rework traditional notions of authority in the workplace in ways that strengthen a connection with their inner selves. Finally, the author briefly explores the broader ethical and religious implications that arise from understanding the dynamics of workplace spirituality.
LoRusso, James Dennis, "Labors of Authenticity: The Function of Spirituality and the Construction of Selfhood in the American Business." Thesis, Georgia State University, 2007.