Discourse as the means of community creation
Summary The concept of "discourse communities" has wide use in education and linguistics, but has not yet been incorporated into studies of organizing. We would like to propagate the term in the context of organizing, as it extends the commonly accepted Foucault's insight that discourses tend to create their objects. One could add that discourses also create the identities of their participants. The concept is used in this paper as an analytical tool for three cases. We begin with the case of an attempt to create a new discourse community to replace an existing one. Following the logic of grounded theory, the analysis moves to a similar case--the creation of a discourse community around a product development project. The third case, although portraying a different process--an international acquisition--reveals a pattern similar to the second one. These cases demonstrate that discourses can both create and dissolve boundaries around a discourse community, and that although discourse is often used to create inclusion, it may also recreate the traditional patterns of exclusion.
Volume (Year): 24 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
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