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Deconstructing discussions of culture in international management textbooks: Conspicuous absences and deafening silences

Moulettes, Agneta LU and Fougère, Martin (2009) Critical Management Studies Conference, 2007
Abstract
Underlining the too widespread underestimation of cultural differences by managers, international management literature problematizes culture as a critical factor for global competitiveness. Evidence from recent critical research (e.g. Westwood 2006) has shown that many of the main works within cross-cultural management (especially Hofstede 1980) and more broadly international management can be seen as characterized by a (neo)colonial, orientalist worldview. In this paper, we examine how ‘culture’ is discussed in five well known international management textbooks. We see postcolonial theory as potentially providing insightful lens for examining power relations concealed in this literature largely constructed from a central (Western)... (More)
Underlining the too widespread underestimation of cultural differences by managers, international management literature problematizes culture as a critical factor for global competitiveness. Evidence from recent critical research (e.g. Westwood 2006) has shown that many of the main works within cross-cultural management (especially Hofstede 1980) and more broadly international management can be seen as characterized by a (neo)colonial, orientalist worldview. In this paper, we examine how ‘culture’ is discussed in five well known international management textbooks. We see postcolonial theory as potentially providing insightful lens for examining power relations concealed in this literature largely constructed from a central (Western) position that views the rest of the world as periphery. The aim of the paper is to deconstruct, with a broadly postcolonial sensibility, the discussions on culture found in international management textbooks that especially claim to 1) emphasize the cultural factor, and 2) be appropriate for reading in all parts of the globe. We especially emphasize a number of silences, which when made conspicuous through deconstruction reveal how Western-educated managers are meant to get to see (and not see) the world once disciplined by these powerful discourses on culture. (Less)
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Critical Management Studies Conference, 2007
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English
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6758f410-21e8-494f-bb2f-a1e883905045 (old id 1387333)
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2009-04-20 12:27:25
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@misc{6758f410-21e8-494f-bb2f-a1e883905045,
  abstract     = {Underlining the too widespread underestimation of cultural differences by managers, international management literature problematizes culture as a critical factor for global competitiveness. Evidence from recent critical research (e.g. Westwood 2006) has shown that many of the main works within cross-cultural management (especially Hofstede 1980) and more broadly international management can be seen as characterized by a (neo)colonial, orientalist worldview. In this paper, we examine how ‘culture’ is discussed in five well known international management textbooks. We see postcolonial theory as potentially providing insightful lens for examining power relations concealed in this literature largely constructed from a central (Western) position that views the rest of the world as periphery. The aim of the paper is to deconstruct, with a broadly postcolonial sensibility, the discussions on culture found in international management textbooks that especially claim to 1) emphasize the cultural factor, and 2) be appropriate for reading in all parts of the globe. We especially emphasize a number of silences, which when made conspicuous through deconstruction reveal how Western-educated managers are meant to get to see (and not see) the world once disciplined by these powerful discourses on culture.},
  author       = {Moulettes, Agneta and Fougère, Martin},
  language     = {eng},
  title        = {Deconstructing discussions of culture in international management textbooks: Conspicuous absences and deafening silences},
  year         = {2009},
}