A lifetime in the workplace: Continuity and change in image management of working women in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota | Intellect Skip to content
1981
Volume 9, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 2050-0726
  • E-ISSN: 2050-0734

Abstract

Professional women engage with individual and social issues of ageing, appearance and identity throughout their lives. The challenges professional women have faced since the 1970s have changed as to how they view themselves in new and varied contemporary careers and their perceptions of how others view them. Eleven career women in the Twin Cities, MN, were interviewed about how they managed their appearances throughout their careers. Responses were organized into groups built around the women’s early career narratives – 20s–30s, mid-career narratives – 40s–60s, late and post-career narratives – 70s–90s. We found that these women consciously thought about the meaning and impact of work and their work wardrobe as they passed through each career stage, especially in terms of impression and identity management. We learned through the stories they told how the art, practice and meaning around dressing for work changed over time – with both continuity and change in their expressed outcomes.

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2022-07-01
2024-02-29
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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): appearance; expression; identity; professional; wardrobe; women’s career
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