In the Name of Passion: Passionate Work and Precariousness in Food and Beverage Italian Micro-entrepreneurs

Alessandro Gerosa

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in libroContributo a convegno


Thanks to a sector characterized by a rapid transformation toward an omnivorous taste for authentic experiences and a historically rooted tradition of coffee bars and food, to open a small food or drink business in Italy has become one of the most accessible entry-points to a humbler and labourintensive variant of the «creative economy». This study analyses micro-entrepreneurs in food and beverage sector in Milan, Italy through ethnographic material composed by 40 interviews and participant observation at events hosted at their businesses, using the concepts of passionate work and precariousness as theoretical lenses. Three main results are discussed: micro-entrepreneurs in their everyday work realize a «passionate sacrifice», as they declare themselves willing to sacrifice economic value for ethical value in the production of the goods or services sold to the customers, that is both a voluntary act that tries to transform labour into attractive labor and an obliged ritual to be a recognized member of the market niche and survive as micro-entrepreneur; to frame their work as fulfilled «in the name of passion» becomes fundamental to identify themselves as a different category from more traditional businesses in the same field and to offset the more manual-intensive component of their job that persists and the stress related to precariousness and the generally low economic earnings; the choice to become a micro-entrepreneur, facing high risks and precariousness, depends on the desire to achieve a satisfying job in comparison with employed labour, considered often similarly precarious but without the benefits of being «employers of themselves».
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteEurope and Beyond: Boundaries, Barriers and Belonging
Numero di pagine1
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2017
Evento14th ESA Conference - Manchester
Durata: 20 ago 201923 ago 2019


Convegno14th ESA Conference


  • passionate work, precariousness, micro-entrepreneurs


Entra nei temi di ricerca di 'In the Name of Passion: Passionate Work and Precariousness in Food and Beverage Italian Micro-entrepreneurs'. Insieme formano una fingerprint unica.

Cita questo