The Sublime Object of Entrepreneurship
This paper engages with debates on enterprise culture and one of its key subjects—the entrepreneur. Enlisting the work of Jacques Lacan and Slavoj Žižek, we attempt to explain the continuing failure of entrepreneurship discourse to assign the character of the entrepreneur a positive identity. Shifting away from stable categories such as ‘the entrepreneur’, we describe entrepreneurship in terms of Lacan’s concept of the Real and Žižek’s concept of the sublime object. This allows us to critically scrutinize the operation of the phantasmic category of the entrepreneur. In addition to indicating some prospects for the future of psychoanalytic cultural criticism in organization studies, we make a case for a continual questioning of the subject, a questioning that is today being foreclosed by those critics who were first to call the subject into question.