Stigmatization and self-presentation in Australian entrepreneurial identity formation
Public narratives concerning indigenous economic development are increasingly being colonized by enterprise discourse. As du Gay (1996, 2000a) amply demonstrates, in another connection, discursive colonization is a multifaceted phenomenon that intertwines with political and economic institutions to incorporate a wide range of actors. This effect is evident as political reorientations towards — and within — indigenous communities, and welfare spending cuts due to neo-conservative state governance, have piqued public interest in indigenous enterprise as a form of economic development that can redress chronic social inequality (Peredo et al., 2004). Australia is a case in point, as significant academic (Hindle and Rushworth, 2002), state-political (Hockey, 2003), and Aboriginal activist voices (Pearson, 2000) have called for policies to encourage more Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders to set up their own businesses. The dominant view is that supporting indigenous enterprise start-ups will help to alleviate the socioeconomic disadvantage currently experienced by indigenous Australians, thereby improving their life-chances and decreasing their dependence on the state.