The Performativity, Performance and Lively Practices in Financial Stability Press Conferences,

John Morris

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    14 Citations (Scopus)


    Contributing to current debates about financial performativity, this article
    seeks to explore the multiple and overlapping layers of performativity
    within central banking. The specific focus is upon the press conferences
    of the Bank of England, which coincide with the release of their
    Financial Stability Reports and results of their stress testing exercises.
    Three positions in the debate about financial performativity are
    identified and outlined – namely, ‘Austinian’, ‘generic’, and ‘layered’
    performativities. Analysis of the transcripts and video footage of the
    press conferences shows that both Austinian and Generic performativity
    are at work in the ‘layered performances’ of financial stability by the
    Bank: the manner in which technical devices affect the economy
    intersects with the way reiterative practices bring about the effect they
    name. Moreover, drawing on the writings of Derrida, Deleuze and
    Sedgwick on iterability, difference and performativity, the article
    analyses the disruption, creativity and drama that is also present in the
    central bank’s press conferences. The ostensible production of financial
    stability by the Bank is thus shown to draw attention to an additional
    layer of financial performativity that has been previously neglected in
    cultural economy research – that which I group together under the
    umbrella term of ‘lively practices’.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)245-260
    Number of pages16
    JournalJournal of Cultural Economy
    Issue number3
    Early online date23 Feb 2016
    Publication statusPublished - 2016


    • Performativity
    • drama
    • central banking
    • financial stability;
    • press conference

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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