Analysing, Accounting for and Unmasking Domination: On Our Role as Scholars of Practice, Practitioners of Social Science and Public Intellectuals

D. Golsorkhi, B. Leca, M. Lounsbury, C. RAMIREZ


October 2009, vol. 16, n°6, pp.779-797

Departments: Accounting & Management Control

Keywords: Bourdieu, Domination, Methodology, Organization studies, Participant objectivation, Reflexivity, Relational perspective, Social roles of scholars

Over the last 30 years, there has been an increasing interest in organizational analysis for the work of Pierre Bourdieu. However, the consequent body of literature often lacks an integrated comprehension of Bourdieusian theory and therefore fails to fully exploit its potentialities. In this essay, we argue for a more systematic engagement with the work of Bourdieu by organizational scholars and emphasize the opportunity to develop cumulative research on domination within and between organizations. The means by which systems of domination are reproduced without conscious intention by agents is a central issue for Bourdieu and arguably the primary reason for the development of his theoretical framework. It is thus through the study of domination that one can acquire a panoramic vision of Bourdieusian concepts that have been otherwise too often tackled separately. Moreover, domination is also a key entry to the understanding of how social scientists produce their own knowledge and of their role as members of society. We emphasize that as scholars, we have a moral responsibility to be reflexive about our practice and the social worlds we study in order to ultimately use the knowledge we produce to inform and direct social progress