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Daniel Ericsson and Monika Kostera

The Introduction presents hope and organizing as radical ideas in the times of the interregnum. The book is outlined and its main thrust is narrated.

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Organizing Hope

Narratives for a Better Future

Edited by Daniel Ericsson and Monika Kostera

Crumbling social institutions, disintegrating structures, and a profound sense of uncertainty are the signs of our time. In this book, this contemporary crisis is explored and illuminated, providing narratives that suggest how the notion of hope can be leveraged to create powerful methods of organizing for the future. Chapters first consider theoretical and philosophical perspectives on hopeful organizing, followed by both empirical discussions about achieving change and more imaginative narratives of alternative and utopian futures, including an exploration of the differing roles of work, creativity, idealism, inclusivity and activism.
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Anke Strauß and Christina Ciupke

Hope is a paradoxical place. It is where we store what we long for and what we are fearful of at the same time. It is where we acknowledge the fragility of our lives. Hope lies in uncertainty.

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Edited by Daniel Ericsson and Monika Kostera

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Marco Berti

This metaphor highlights the role of differences and contrapositions, showing how these can be used to describe discourses. Discourses are similar to maps because they are representational and generative, creating their own subjects; as with maps, discourses come in different scales and they are equally (re)produced by means of symbolic practices and artefacts. At the same time, the semantic tensions between the concepts help to highlight the complex and intertwined relationship between discourse, power, material reality and knowledge. Key words: cartography, power/knowledge, representation, scale of discourse, phronesis
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Marco Berti

The mask metaphor is employed to show that while discourses produce subjectivities and identities they can also produce ambiguity, superficiality, silence. Various forms of organizational silence are considered, ranging from individual acts to hegemonic repressions of identity. The metaphor also enables one to highlight the role of fashions and fads in organizational discourse, and to consider the vices and virtues of emptiness. Finally, the existence of powerful discourses which are build around an essential semantic void is considered. Key words: ambiguity, organizational silence, hegemony, management fashions, emptiness
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Marco Berti

Symbolic practices have a pivotal role in producing and preserving social patterns and organizational settings. However, it would be problematic to equate discourse and organization, since the latter requires more than mere talk to be substantiated and it is therefore useful to consider discourses as organizing devices that operate in conjunction with material elements that can be examined with approaches such as actor-network theory. At the same time, the ongoing production of social association does not happen in a void, since existing power/knowledge structures, embedded in discourse, constrain and enable these associations, suggesting the need to include a phronetic critical perspective in the analysis. The case of attempted reform in the Vatican is used as a concrete exemplification of the complex web of relationships. Key words: organizing, phronesis, critical discourse analysis, actor-network theory, the Vatican
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Marco Berti

Rather than proposing a single definition of organizational discourse this chapter starts by reviewing alternative taxonomies that have been proposed to account for the multiple varieties of organizational discourse analysis that have emerged in literature. Some of the ontological and epistemological challenges encountered by discourse analysts are then discussed. To address these problems a new interpretative model which connects materiality and discourse is proposed, building on the concept of affordances. Key words: organizational discourse, varieties of discourse, ontology, affordances, materiality
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Marco Berti

Our knowledge and understanding of organizations is both enabled and constrained by invisible relationship of power that are embedded in the ways in which we act and speak. The notion of discourse has been used by many authors to describe and study these phenomena, and this volume offers a succinct but comprehensive introduction to the vast field of critical organizational discourse analysis. Targeted at graduate and doctoral students, and at non-specialist academic who need to familiarize with the academic debate on the subject, the book harnesses the power of metaphors to describe the many faces of discourse.