The fox and the hedgehog go to work - A natural history of workplace collusion
Source TitleManagement Communication Quarterly
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS INC
University of Melbourne Author/sSewell, Graham
AffiliationManagement and Marketing
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsSewell, G. (2008). The fox and the hedgehog go to work - A natural history of workplace collusion. MANAGEMENT COMMUNICATION QUARTERLY, 21 (3), pp.344-363. https://doi.org/10.1177/0893318907310944.
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The author argues that an ironic approach to collusion can help shift the focus of resistance away from the relatively rare events surrounding implacable opposition or total unanimity to the quotidian aspects of workplace politics. Collusion is characterized as an outcome of organizational politics conducted between the traditionally opposed parties of radical industrial sociology (i.e., managers and workers) under the guidance of an ironic mode of cognition. Irony is depicted as a foxlike way of gaining “a perspective on perspectives,” which provides a means of understanding stalemate, accommodation, and collusion by showing how opposing ideological positions are indebted. It also illuminates the moments when collusion breaks down and resisting parties become implacably opposed hedgehogs (one position prevails over the other), leading to overt conflict and resistance.
KeywordsBusiness and Management
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