Storytelling in Organizations: Facts, Fictions, and Fantasies by Y. Gabriel

2000, Oxford University Press, Kindle Version REVIEW by Emily Ball Cicchini Gabriel’s culmination of 10 years of organizational study, focusing on narrative story collection, is a highly satisfying, easy-to-read application of narrative theory to organizational communication. Firmly grounded in Aristotle, Bakhtin, Barthes, Boje, Bruner, Burke, Czarniawska, Derrida, Eco, Foucault, Freud, Fromm, Frye, Giddens, Goffman, Habermas, […]

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Some Reflections on Organizational Communication Theory

One of the interesting aspects of Communication Studies as a field is the sheer volume of theories generated and accepted to describe what’s happening within (and sometimes across and between) organizations. It’s tempting to believe there are so many floating around you could find a theory to apply to almost any situation, without ever having […]

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The Internet as an Organization

I have been thinking lately a lot about what would happen if you tried to define the Internet as an organization. There are some common sense assumptions we make when we think about organizations.  One is that they are hierarchical in structure.  Another is that they are formed to serve some overriding mission or purpose […]

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Time and Narrative by Paul Ricoeur

REVIEW Ricoeur, Paul.  Time and Narrative (Temps et Récit), 3 vols. trans. Kathleen McLaughlin and David Pellauer. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1984, 1985, 1988 (1983, 1984, 1985). by Emily Ball Cicchini Volume 1 Part I:  The Circle of Narrative and Temporality Part II  History and Narrative Volume 2 Part III:  The Configuration of Time […]

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Narration Identity and Historical Consciousness edited by Jürgen Straub

REVIEW Straub, Jürgen, ed. (2005). Narration Identity and Historical Consciousness. New York: Berghahn by Emily Ball Cicchini This anthology of 12 articles by different authors is part of a series called “Making Sense of History.” And in this sense, it attempts to escape the boundaries of the trappings of “history” by introducing interdisciplinary ideas to […]

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The Emergent Organization: Communication As Its Site and Surface by James R. Taylor and Elizabeth J. Van Every

REVIEW The Emergent Organization: Communication As Its Site and Surface. Taylor, James R. and Van Every, Elizabeth J. (2000) Routledge/Lawrence Erlbaum Associates (2009 e-book edition) By Emily Ball Cicchini Like Giddens and Bruner, Taylor and Van Every cover a lot of intellectual territory. The book—firmly embedded within the sensemaking, enacting traditions—unfolds methodically with such confidence […]

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Actual Minds, Possible Worlds by Jerome Bruner

REVIEW Bruner, Jerome. (1986) Actual minds, possible worlds. Harvard: Cambridge. By Emily Ball Cicchini Bruner begins and ends his book talking about actual text vs virtual text; that is, the words on the page, and then what a reader gets out of them, reflected by retelling. He recounts some of the same territory that others […]

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The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life by Erving Goffman

REVIEW of Goffman, Erving (1959) The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. USA: Anchor (Penguin Reprint 1990)

Goffman’s seminal first sociological work is a lyrical descriptive riff on the “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players” metaphor. But where Shakespeare wrote merely in terms of the passing of time, parsing out life’s seven phases in the comedy As You Like It, Goffman explodes the idea across culture and class, boldly attempting to do a dramaturgy of the whole of human society (or at least, the Anglo American society in which he built his impressive academic career).

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Diffusion of Innovations by Everett Rogers

REVIEW Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of Innovations. New York: Free Press. by Emily Ball Cicchini One glance at the table of contents of this venerable text on an interdisciplinary research tradition and it’s clear why it has reached a 5th Edition. It’s laid out in perfect rational order, indicating a mature, well-tested theory, and […]

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The Social Psychology of Organizing by Karl Weick

REVIEW Weick, Karl (1969). The Social Psychology of Organizing. Reading MA: Addison-Wesley. by Emily Ball Cicchini This deceptively thin volume with a modern orange and ripped paper blue cover design represents Weick’s original treatise on the reform of the study of organizing.  Written partly in response to a perceived crisis in social psychology, which at […]

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Agency and ANTs

So, the thing that has jumped out to me from the data of undergraduate leadership stories of circumpsection is the props. I’m trying to frame it using the subject/object problem:  my professor suggest actor-network theory. More things to read now: John Law (1992). “Notes on the Theory of the Actor Network: Ordering, Strategy, and Heterogeneity.” […]

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Still Thinking about Metaphor as Smallest Unit of Meaning

Dr. Browning, our professor, was prodding the class last week about inductive vs. deductive reasoning.  Do you need to come into a project with a thesis that you prove or disprove? Well, no.  That’s not what grounded theory is about.  You let the theory emerge.  Or what narrative theory is about.  It’s not generalizable.  It’s […]

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What It is Like to Code for Grounded Theory…

Kinda just like grading papers or being on a review panel for a creative award. Or writing a play from hundreds of pages of dialogue and description and prose and poetry written by fourth or sixth graders or ninth graders from inner city public schools, which I did more than once. You read the text […]

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Reflections on Recent Conversations

Tweaking “The Medium is the Message.” Looking for the part of the message that does not die/cannot be killed (like mad cow disease) (thanks Sherry!). Articulating the desire to want to find/define the smallest element that is essential to communication that transcends all media. Exploring the Media Ecology Association (thanks Kerk!).  Terrific reading list there. […]

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Grounded Theory

Learning lots of wonderful things from visiting lecturers about methodologies for Grounded Theory. Can it be objective?  Can you ever remove bias?  How can you claim validity and truth without objective quantifiable measures? “Glaser and Strauss have disagreed on how to apply the grounded theory method, resulting in a split between Straussian and Glaserian paradigms.” […]

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Handbook of Career Theory by Arthur, Hall, and Lawrence

Handbook of career theory – Michael Bernard Arthur, Michael B. Arthur, Douglas T. Hall, Barbara S. Lawrence – Google Books. Particularly careers, identities, and institutions.  Lots of great stuff about the Chicago School of Sociologists, particularly Strauss and Hughes. a)  careers fuse the objective and the subjective; b)  careers entail status passages; c)  careers are […]

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New Media As Performance Article

Very pleased to have an article I wrote posted on Howl Round, a online Journal developed through the American Voices New Play Institute at Arena Stage:  http://www.howlround.com/new-media-as-performance-by-emily-ball-cicchini/ Hope you’ll take a look and make a comment.

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