AbstractsWomens Studies

A manifesto for neoliberal ideology in the workplace : an intersectional analysis of Sandberg???s Lean In

by Lauren Elizabeth White

Institution: San Diego State University
Year: 2016
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2063639
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10211.3/172761


Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook???s Chief Operating Officer, wrote Lean In: Women Work and the Will to Lead in 2013. The book was immediately a best seller, and was branded a reboot of feminism. Lean In may be a step in the right direction for women who hold executive level positions, but for women of color, and women in lower socio-economic statuses, this was not the case. My research utilizes intersectionality to address the following three questions: (1) In what ways do Sandberg???s rhetorical choices align with neoliberalism? (2) What describes the discursive techniques Sandberg uses to address race within Lean In? (3) How do Sandberg???s discursive techniques inform our understanding of women in the workplace? Ultimately, I argue that Sandberg engages in neoliberal rhetoric as a way to rebrand the status quo, excluding race and class from discussions about women in the workplace. Neoliberalism is the belief that everything can be commodified, that accumulating capital is the key to success, and that everyone has access to the same opportunities. Further, just as feminism has been altered by neoliberalism, Sheryl Sandberg???s Lean In is not a reboot of feminism, or a feminist manifesto, but rather a neoliberal manifesto for women in the workplace. Keywords: Neoliberalism, Feminism, Intersectionality, Sheryl Sandberg, Lean In Advisors/Committee Members: Goehring, Charles, Geist-Martin, Patricia, Mattingly, Doreen.