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Language and institutional reality: Reply and response

McHoul, A.W. (1987) Language and institutional reality: Reply and response. Organization Studies, 8 (4). pp. 363-373.

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This paper is written in the form of a partial response to an earlier paper in Organization Studies, Clegg's 'The language of power and the power of language'. It argues that Clegg's conflation of realism with materialism, on the one hand, and relativism with idealism, on the other, leads him to neglect some very important sociological sources. In particular, the present paper attemps to rescue ethnomethodology (and to a lesser extent Foucauldian discourse analysis) from Clegg's charges. It does so by arguing for a counter-realist materialism in sociological theory. There is a partial re-analysis of Clegg's main data fragment taken from a transcript of talk on a building site.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Media, Communication and Culture
Publisher: SAGE Publications
Copyright: 1987 EGOS
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