Author: Limerick, Brigid
Type of paper: Abstract refereed
We need to look carefully at the whole concept of 'career' in a world where discontinuous change is becoming the norm. Our present concept of what makes a career arose out of the industrial hierarchical models of organisation that developed in the late 19th century and early 20th century. The typical corpocratic career was defined as consisting of "formal movement from job to job - changing title, tasks, and often work groups in the process" (Kanter, 1990:305). The concept has been developed in this framework by theorists such as Super in the early 1950s who "proposed a sequence of five developmental stages and five vocational developmental tasks" (Northcutt, 1991:11). Much of this work borrowed heavily from developmental psychologists to look at the phases of a man's life to define how one's career should be planned (see for instance Levinson's book The Seasons of a Man's Life). As with much other research of this kind these studies of men's careers were assumed to cover women's careers as well.