The Liminality of Temporary Agency Work: Exploring the Dimensions of Temporary Agency Workers’ Liminal Experience

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    The concept of liminality refers to the experience to be betwixt-and-between social structures and the associated positions, statuses, and roles. We advance the original use of the concept by introducing the various meanings that the experience of being in a liminal state can take. Drawing on political anthropology we identify the dimensions of ‘types of subjects,’‘time,’ ‘space,’ and ‘scale’ in order to analytically unlock the liminal experience. Exemplifying our concept we present the findings from an own study of temporary agency workers in Denmark. Exploring the workers’ interpretations allows us to illustrate to what extent their employment situation constitutes a multi-dimensional liminal experience between established social structures and employment categories. The article emphasizes the complexity
    of the liminal experience. Theoretically and empirically, we show the many meanings along which liminality can unfold in organizational and work-related contexts. We argue that future studies should explore the various dimensions in other contexts of passages from one relatively stable state to another. In doing so, similarities and differences between various liminal experiences and the role the various dimensions play could be identified.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalNordic Journal of Working Life Studies
    Volume5
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)51-68
    ISSN2245-0157
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Fingerprint

    worker
    Denmark
    experience
    social structure
    employment situation
    Temporary agency work
    Liminality
    Workers
    anthropology
    interpretation
    Social structure
    Anthropology

    Keywords

    • liminality
    • temporary agency work
    • Denmark
    • flexible employment

    Cite this

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    title = "The Liminality of Temporary Agency Work: Exploring the Dimensions of Temporary Agency Workers’ Liminal Experience",
    abstract = "The concept of liminality refers to the experience to be betwixt-and-between social structures and the associated positions, statuses, and roles. We advance the original use of the concept by introducing the various meanings that the experience of being in a liminal state can take. Drawing on political anthropology we identify the dimensions of ‘types of subjects,’‘time,’ ‘space,’ and ‘scale’ in order to analytically unlock the liminal experience. Exemplifying our concept we present the findings from an own study of temporary agency workers in Denmark. Exploring the workers’ interpretations allows us to illustrate to what extent their employment situation constitutes a multi-dimensional liminal experience between established social structures and employment categories. The article emphasizes the complexityof the liminal experience. Theoretically and empirically, we show the many meanings along which liminality can unfold in organizational and work-related contexts. We argue that future studies should explore the various dimensions in other contexts of passages from one relatively stable state to another. In doing so, similarities and differences between various liminal experiences and the role the various dimensions play could be identified.",
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    The Liminality of Temporary Agency Work: Exploring the Dimensions of Temporary Agency Workers’ Liminal Experience. / Winkler, Ingo; Mahmood , Mustafa Khalil .

    In: Nordic Journal of Working Life Studies, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2015, p. 51-68.

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - The Liminality of Temporary Agency Work: Exploring the Dimensions of Temporary Agency Workers’ Liminal Experience

    AU - Winkler, Ingo

    AU - Mahmood , Mustafa Khalil

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    N2 - The concept of liminality refers to the experience to be betwixt-and-between social structures and the associated positions, statuses, and roles. We advance the original use of the concept by introducing the various meanings that the experience of being in a liminal state can take. Drawing on political anthropology we identify the dimensions of ‘types of subjects,’‘time,’ ‘space,’ and ‘scale’ in order to analytically unlock the liminal experience. Exemplifying our concept we present the findings from an own study of temporary agency workers in Denmark. Exploring the workers’ interpretations allows us to illustrate to what extent their employment situation constitutes a multi-dimensional liminal experience between established social structures and employment categories. The article emphasizes the complexityof the liminal experience. Theoretically and empirically, we show the many meanings along which liminality can unfold in organizational and work-related contexts. We argue that future studies should explore the various dimensions in other contexts of passages from one relatively stable state to another. In doing so, similarities and differences between various liminal experiences and the role the various dimensions play could be identified.

    AB - The concept of liminality refers to the experience to be betwixt-and-between social structures and the associated positions, statuses, and roles. We advance the original use of the concept by introducing the various meanings that the experience of being in a liminal state can take. Drawing on political anthropology we identify the dimensions of ‘types of subjects,’‘time,’ ‘space,’ and ‘scale’ in order to analytically unlock the liminal experience. Exemplifying our concept we present the findings from an own study of temporary agency workers in Denmark. Exploring the workers’ interpretations allows us to illustrate to what extent their employment situation constitutes a multi-dimensional liminal experience between established social structures and employment categories. The article emphasizes the complexityof the liminal experience. Theoretically and empirically, we show the many meanings along which liminality can unfold in organizational and work-related contexts. We argue that future studies should explore the various dimensions in other contexts of passages from one relatively stable state to another. In doing so, similarities and differences between various liminal experiences and the role the various dimensions play could be identified.

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