Table One: Metaphysics of Selected Alternative Narratologies

Source: Chapter Six in Westwood & Linstead's (in press) Language and Organization Book

Reclaiming Story in Organization Narratologies and Action Sciences

By David M. Boje, Rossana C. Alvarez and Bruce Schooling

New Mexico State University

September 29, 1999

 

Narratology

Organization Studies

Ontology

Epistemology

Methodology

Living Story

 

 

TwoTrees (1997)

Toelken (1996)

Clair (1993-1997)

Stories live and possess time, place, and mind.

Knowledge is the story performed in time, place, and has a life of its own (mind); Story can not be dualized from context without imbalance and other consequences.

Restory the relation between dominant narrative and authors’ preferred story.

Realist

Peters & Waterman (1982)

Hammer & Champy (1993); Harvard cases

 

Early Martin lab & uniqueness studies;

Wilkens (1979); Lombardo (1984).

McCall et al. (1989)

"Real" reality mirrored more or less imperfectly in narrative or case. Narrative is a cultural artifact, and object; Social facts.

Dualist: real is real, narrative is subjective interpretative knowledge; story is an object to know other objects (culture, etc.); managerialist; strategic.

Experimental manipulation; interview with narrative as measures; narrate with rating scales; biography of narrative uniqueness.

Formalist

Barthes (early)

Ricoeur

Levi-Strauss

Propp Shklovsky

Fisher Frye

de Saussure

H. White

Czarniawska (1997 in use of Burke scene- act ratio);

Ford & Ford (1997 in use of speech act theory).

 

"Real" is unknowable, but some forms are pragmatic or possess fidelity and probability, or scenes, plots, act, agency, purpose.

Narrative is sign system separated from knowledge of the signified; Narrative is rhetorical device; Contextualist epistemology of historical event unfolding in the present.

Collect and contrast form of the narrative and coherence of narrative elements.

Pragmatist

Pierce & Pepper; Microstoria work e.g. Ginzburg, Muir, Levi.

Emery’s Search Conference; Hopewell's congregation studies.

Assertion of the reality of general terms or laws. Meaning is oriented toward the future.

Ideas are not mere abstractions; they are essences--things are what they are. Names are intended to show the nature of things. "Any sort of fact is easily real for a contextualist" (Pepper, 1942: 143)

History session by the actors. Learning from the past in view of future action.

Social Constructionist

Burger & Luckmann

Geertz

Blumer/Mead

Denzin

Weick

Gergen(s)

Boyce (1995

Czarniawska (1997 applying Blumer & Weick).

Cooperrider & Srivastva (1987)

 

Individual and socially constructed realities

Narrative is subjective account reified as objective knowledge. Narratives are acts of sensemaking.

Explore relative differences in narrative social construction.

Poststructuralist

Derrida

DeMan

Culler

Fairclough

Foucault (archaeology)

White & Epston

Mumby (1984)

Martin (1991)

Kilduff (1993)

Boje (1995)

Martin & Knopoff (forthcoming)

There is no outside to inside text duality or originary narrative.

Narratives are intertextual to knowledge of other narratives; narratives are ideological with political consequence

Deconstructive reading of narratives.

Critical Theorist

Marx

Marcuse

Horkheimer

Ordono

Debord in situationist Movement

Alvesson & Willmott (1996); Mills & Simmons (1996); Fulop & Linstead (1999)

 

Historical materialism (even dialectic teleology) shaped by class, ethnicity, gender, and socioeconomic values

Grand narratives dominate local knowledge. But there can be local resistance to grand knowledge narratives.

Hegemonic reading of narratives; ideology readings of narratives.

Postmodernist

Best & Kellner (on Debord)

Baudrillard

Lyotard

Jameson

Deleuze & Guattari

Burrell (1988); Clegg (1990); Hassard & Parker (1993); Boje (1995)

Harju (1996); Boje, Gephart & Thatchenkery (1996); Hassard & Parker (1993); Bergquist (1993); Hatch (1996); Burrell (1997)

Virtual and cultural hyperreal, skeptic critiques of late capitalism, to affirmation of spiritual world.

Knowledge and power are narratively fragmented; to affirmative knowledge living cosmos.

Polyphonic and juxtaposed readings and writing of a chorus of narratives