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So far in our exploration of communication ethics we’ve looked at self-reflection and the personal of evaluating our own ideas of “the Good,” we’ve looked at how we balance that with “the Other” in the public sphere, and we’ve engaged the idea of organizational communication ethics as a “dwelling place.” This discussion builds on the concepts of organizational communication ethics and extends our engagement to intercultural ethics. I’ll use the idea of “community of memory” as is expressed through organizational communication ethics, and then demonstrate the intercultural communication experience of “rhetorical interruption” as experienced in an organization.
For this communication “uh oh,” I created a case study based on a scenario in an organization “by women, for women.” I was not involved in the original scenario, and I’ve changed the details, but the issues are real. I address the question: What role does gender play in a woman’s organization? How can gender be an issue if everyone in the organization is the same gender?
One big question in the industry not addressed here: do we need women’s-only business organizations at all? What do you think? Do Western women have special needs related to business?
Rakow, L. F., & Nastasia, D. J. (2009). On feminist theory of public relations: An example from Dorothy E. Smith. In Ø. Ihlen, B. van Ruler, & M. Fredriksson (Eds.), Public relations and social theory: Key figures and concepts (pp. 252-277). New York: Routledge.
In this podcast I use my own communications gaffe, a snarky email forwarded to the wrong person, to illustrate how to use Erving Goffman’s theory of Impression Management to navigate and hopefully avoid communication gaffes, particularly with electronic communication.
Goffman proposes that interpersonal communication (and by extension organizational communication) can be compared to a drama on a stage. How have you presented yourself as an “actor” in a communication”performance?” How would viewing your electronic communication as occuring “on stage” influence your communication choices?
My discussion of Goffman is based on an essay by Catrin Johansson, “On Goffman: Researching Relations with Erving Goffman as Pathfinder,” found in the book Public Relations and Social Theory: Key Figures and Concepts by Øyvind Ihlen, Betteke van Ruler, and Magnus Fredricksson.
For those interested in the APA citation:
Johansson, C. (2009) On Goffman: Researching relations with Erving Goffman as pathfinder. In Ihlen, Ø., van Ruler, B., & Fredrickson, M. (Eds.), Public relations and social theory: Key figures and concepts (pp. 119-140). New York, NY: Routledge.
Music courtesy of Nenad Simic via Freesound.org.