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The Performance ComplexCompetition and Competitions in Social Life$
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David Stark

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198861669

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198861669.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 19 September 2021

Business Education and Anxiety in the Performance of Value

Business Education and Anxiety in the Performance of Value

(p.260) 13 Business Education and Anxiety in the Performance of Value
The Performance Complex

Fabian Muniesa

Oxford University Press

Business education epitomizes the cultural complex that situates performance (understood both as the intensification of valuation and as the spectacle of decision) at the center of social life. The experiential training technique known as the case method, famously recognizable as a Harvard Business School product, carries in particular a series of meanings that are central to the formation of the ideals of performance, adventure, effectiveness, and aplomb that distinguish business education today. It also conveys, however, elements of anxiety that are characteristic of the notion of the real that is actioned in such a setting. This hypothesis is explored here through an examination of early and contemporary aspects of the case method at the Harvard Business School, in particular in the financial valuation curriculum. It is suggested that the performative features of the case method, widely understood, concur with an exacerbation of the troubling aspects of the “performance complex.”

Keywords:   business education, case method, valuation, Harvard Business School, performance, anxiety

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