Barthesian perspectives on accounting communication and visual images of professional accountancy
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine Barthes' influence on, and potential for, accounting communication research; and to apply Barthes' principles to visual images of professional accountancy. Design/methodology/approach – The study seeks to provide: a synthesis of prior accounting research that has drawn on Barthes' work, followed by an overview of Barthes' work in both its rational, structuralist, phase, and its more sentimental, post-structuralist, phase, that identifies strands of interest to accounting communication; and Barthesian semiotic interpretations of visual images of accountancy portrayed in the annual report front covers of a major UK accounting firm through their linguistics (anchorage and relay), denotation and connotation. Findings – Barthes' work has been surprisingly little used in accounting; a number of aspects of Barthes's work could be more fruitfully exploited, especially those from his later post-structuralist phase; a Barthesian approach assists in reading the dual portrayal of accountancy as both an art and a science, and as business-aware as well as traditionally professional. Research limitations/implications – The theoretical section is limited to a broad overview of Barthes' very extensive work; the empirical section provides a detailed analysis of one organization. It would be useful to extend the research to more extended analyses based on Barthes' prolific work, and to many aspects of accounting communication. Practical implications – The analysis may be of interest to all accounting researchers, practitioners, trainees and auditors, since communication is central to accounting. Originality/value – The paper adds to theoretical work in accounting communication, to the empirical literature on the interpretation of verbal and visual signs in accounting and accountability statements, and to understanding of the external images of professional accountancy.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 24 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (February)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.emeraldinsight.com|
|Order Information:|| Postal: Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK|
Web: http://emeraldgrouppublishing.com/products/journals/journals.htm?id=aaaj Email:
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Michael J. Cooper, 2001. "A Rose.com by Any Other Name," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(6), pages 2371-2388, December.
- McSweeney, Brendan, 2009. "The roles of financial asset market failure denial and the economic crisis: Reflections on accounting and financial theories and practices," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 34(6-7), pages 835-848, August.
- Carnegie, Garry D. & Napier, Christopher J., 2010. "Traditional accountants and business professionals: Portraying the accounting profession after Enron," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 360-376, April.
- Jane Davison, 2007. "Photographs and accountability: cracking the codes of an NGO," Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 20(1), pages 133-158, January.
- Lee Parker & James Guthrie, 2009. "Championing intellectual pluralism," Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 22(1), pages 5-12, January.
- Gudrun Baldvinsdottir & John Burns & Hanne Nørreklit & Robert W. Scapens, 2009. "The image of accountants: from bean counters to extreme accountants," Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 22(6), pages 858-882, August.
- Quattrone, Paolo, 2004. "Accounting for God: accounting and accountability practices in the Society of Jesus (Italy, XVI-XVII centuries)," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 647-683, October.
- Peter Walton, 1993. "Introduction: the true and fair view in British accounting," European Accounting Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 2(1), pages 49-58.
- Jose L. Arquero & Trevor Hassall & John Joyce & Jose A. Donoso, 2007. "Accounting Students and Communication Apprehension: A Study of Spanish and UK Students," European Accounting Review, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(2), pages 299-322.
- Mark A. Clatworthy & Michael John Jones, 2006. "Differential patterns of textual characteristics and company performance in the chairman's statement," Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 19(4), pages 493-511, July.
- McQuarrie, Edward F & Mick, David Glen, 1996. " Figures of Rhetoric in Advertising Language," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(4), pages 424-38, March.
- Benschop, Yvonne & Meihuizen, Hanne E., 2002. "Keeping up gendered appearances: representations of gender in financial annual reports," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 611-636, October.
- Dimnik, Tony & Felton, Sandra, 2006. "Accountant stereotypes in movies distributed in North America in the twentieth century," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 129-155, February.
- Quattrone, Paolo, 2009. "Books to be practiced: Memory, the power of the visual, and the success of accounting," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 85-118, January.
- Walter Masocha & Pauline Weetman, 2007. "Rhetoric in standard setting: the case of the going-concern audit," Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 20(1), pages 74-100, January.
- Preston, Alistair M. & Young, Joni J., 2000. "Constructing the global corporation and corporate constructions of the global: a picture essay," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 25(4-5), pages 427-449, May.
- Cooper, Christine & Puxty, Anthony, 1994. "Reading accounting writing," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 127-146, February.
- Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1986. "Rational Choice and the Framing of Decisions," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(4), pages S251-78, October.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eme:aaajpp:v:24:y:2011:i:2:p:250-283. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Louise Lister)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.