Paralysing Rebellion: Figurations, Celebrity, and Power in Elite Talent Management

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The extensive literature on talent management is relatively silent when it comes to understanding power relations, and this chapter explores power dynamics in elitist talent programme. The argument draws heavily on Norbert Elias’s ideas of figurations and his analysis of Court Society which are coupled with Robert van Krieken’s recent analysis of celebrity society. After considering how power manifests in human resource development (HRD), the chapter unfolds connections between ancient court behaviour and contemporary organization. Behaviour in elite talent pools is likely to be self-regulating in ways that suit both ambitious individuals and senior managers. The analysis suggests that elite talent pools act in ways that paralyse rebellion from within by pitting ambitious individuals against each other.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationManaging Talent
Subtitle of host publicationUnderstanding Critical Perspectives
EditorsBilly Adamsen, Stephen Swailes
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan, Cham
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9783319952017
ISBN (Print)9783319952000, 9783030069919
Publication statusPublished - 12 Nov 2018


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