For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

"Towards A Critique of Managerialism: the Contribution of Simone Weil"

by Grey, Christopher (1996)


This paper seeks to make a contribution to the critical literature on management and, more particularly, to the critique of managerialism. This is achieved via a consideration of the hitherto neglected writing of Simone Weil (1909–43) on management, work and organizations. Following an introduction to this work, attention is focused on Weil's notion of oppression, and detailed consideration is given to the conceptualization of management as a form of oppression. the bulk of the paper elaborates the significance of Weil's work for the critique of contemporary forms of managerialism. In particular, the development of new forms of managerial expertise, and the phenomenon of self-management, are analysed as forms of oppression. It is suggested that Weil offers the basis of a non-relativist post-Marxist form of ethically grounded critique in the field of management studies.


Managerialism, Weil, Oppression, Domination, Self-Management, Marxism, Post-Marxism, Exploitation, Marx, Dehumanisation, Bureaucracy


On Weil, Critical Management Studies, Organisation and Management Studies, Capitalism

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