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'Being Santa Claus': The pursuit of recognition in interactive service work

Hancock, P (2013) ''Being Santa Claus': The pursuit of recognition in interactive service work.' Work, Employment and Society, 27 (6). 1004 - 1020. ISSN 0950-0170

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Abstract

The labour of interactive service work, particularly its emotional and aesthetic dimensions, has been the focus of significant research. This article investigates the occupational practices of perhaps one of the most immediately recognizable of interactive service workers, the Santa Claus performer. Through a series of observations and in-depth, semi-structured interviews, it explores both the conditions of employment encountered by these workers and the practices and techniques by which they aim to bring a level of authenticity - one perceived to be unparalleled in similar roles both service and theatrical - to their performance. In doing so, the article explores work characterized by the pursuit of interpersonal recognition derived from the self-esteem that is desired and, in many instances, achieved from the perceived authenticity of this performance, that is, by being Santa Claus. © The Author(s) 2013.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School
Depositing User: Jo Wiltshire
Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2013 12:06
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2019 16:22
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/6019

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