For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

"Metatheorizing the Dialectic of Self and Other: The Psychodynamics in Work Organizations"

by Carr, Adrian; Zanetti, Lisa A (1999)


Western thought is imbued with thinking based on dichotomy and binary opposition. Embedded in this thinking, however, are not only oppositions but hierarchy. The existence of binaries suggests a struggle for predominance. One proposition must prevail, and the other must be vanquished. The fields of organization behavior and administrative theory reflect this form of rationality. The terms self and other have been cast as constituent elements of the human condition, but the presumption is that self must necessarily be privileged more than other. The authors disagree that such a privileging must occur. Instead, they contend that self and other are mutually constituted. The central focus of this article is an exploration of the self-other relationship that highlights its dialectic nature and, in so doing, provides a deeper appreciation of how these dynamics are manifested in work organizations as elements of trust, ethics, and mourning.

Key Passage



Psychodynamics Of Work, Psychoanalysis, Administrative Theory, Rationality, Dialectic, Trust, Mourning


Psychological Centrality of Work

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