Article

At Home from Mars to Somalia: Recounting Organization Studies

Marta B. Calás and Linda Smircich

in The Oxford Handbook of Organization Theory

Published in print March 2005 | ISBN: 9780199275250
Published online September 2009 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199275250.003.0023

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management

 At Home from Mars to Somalia: Recounting Organization Studies

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This article makes a long detour by taking multidisciplinary understandings of ‘development’ and ‘technology’ via Ethiopia and Somalia. It discusses several news items that illustrate the current state of organization studies and its prospects. Organization studies might tell postmodernist tales about these news items. For instance, a postmodern story might engage the contemporary discourse about time/space compression to observe that time and space seem to be compressed only on the side of the powerful — for ‘the other’ of this tale appears to inhabit an ever-moving space in which time travels backward. Foucauldian versions might genealogize the discourses and practices of ‘success’ and ‘development’. Or, perhaps, the discourses of globalization could be deconstructed by reading the binaries embedded in ‘Martian microbes waiting to bloom and blow up in our bellies’ through the blooming bellies of African populations whose life expectancy is going backward.

Keywords: Ethiopia; Somalia; organization studies; postmodernist tales; globalization

Article.  4344 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Organizational Theory and Behaviour ; Business History

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