Play the Game. The Construction of Gender and Professional Behavior in Organizations: A Frame Analysis

Marita Haas, Sabine T. Koeszegi


The social-constructivist theory of doing gender has not only been established in feminist and sociological discourse over the last decades, but has also attained importance in organization theory. The social and interactive production of gender is context-specific; that is, organizational structures already reflect certain power relations, which are unbalanced and in general structurally supportive of majority groups. In this article, we focus on the question of how gender and professional norms, as well as related role expectations are constructed and negotiated within a specific organization. We also address the consequences of differentiation between professional and non-professional as an organizational practice of inclusion or exclusion. Using the framework analysis of GOFFMAN, a micro-situation from the selection of candidates for a management position is analyzed in order to reconstruct the situational implementation of cultural practices. The detailed analysis of a particular recruiting sequence reveals the effectiveness of established forms of domination as well as the implicit pressure to assimilate into the current masculine norm. Furthermore, it is shown how the irritation of established norms is handled in organizations.


gender; deconstruction; organizational practice; participant observation; frame analysis; Goffman; the gendered organization; organization theory


Copyright (c) 2017 Marita Haas, Sabine T. Koeszegi

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.