Mindfulness - It’s Not What You Think: Toward Critical Reconciliation with Progressive Self-development Practices

Erik Mygind du Plessis*, Sine Nørholm Just

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    The aim of the following paper is to nuance the way in which mindfulness meditation, understood as a set of practices aimed at moment-tomoment awareness, is generally perceived in critical management studies as well as the broader critical social sciences. According to the general consensus, self-development practices thus produce various individual pathologies and reinforce the societal status quo. Using mindfulness meditation as an example, and by exploring how it was practiced by activists during Occupy Wall Street, the paper sets out to challenge this consensus and examine the possibility of progressive selfdevelopment practices. On this basis, we introduce Hartmut Rosa’s concept of resonance as a starting point for conceptualizing the transformative potential of mindfulness without losing sight of the ambivalences and contradictions involved. The paper thus examines the criticism as well as the potential of mindfulness meditation, hoping to arrive at a critical reconciliation through a hopeful and realistic account of what taking note of the self can do.
    Original languageEnglish
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)209-221
    Number of pages13
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

    Bibliographical note

    Published online: March 11, 2021.


    • Meditation
    • Mindfulness
    • Occupy Wall Street
    • Post growth
    • Resonance
    • Selfdevelopment

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