Routes of unusal heads of companies, or the place of "the stranger"

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Norbert ALTER

Sociologist and Professor, Paris-Dauphine University

Seminar Economy and meaning | Wednesday November 6, 2013 - 9h - 11h30

The men are black, North African, homosexual, physically handicapped, and yet they are heads of companies. Perhaps the women are also black or North African, and they too are heads of companies. They are neither graduates of the French administrative elite school (ENA) nor do they have MBAs but, despite being self-taught, they are heads of companies. They have all succeeded, their companies are thriving, they have the respect of their co-workers and clients, and even their bankers because now they have become powerful. Who are unusal heads of companies, all of whom have differences which so many others regard as a stigma relegating them to the margins of society? Norbert Alter recorded the stories of their struggles and their meetings with a few good ‘fairy godmothers’ as well as some ’wicked witches’ who crossed their paths to success. In so doing, he breathes new life into Simmel’s ‘sociology of the stranger’.

The entire article was written by:


This session was published in issue n°107 of the Journal de l'École de Paris du management, entitled Distance et engagement.

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