In an age when large corporations dominate the economic and political landscape, it is tempting to think that their power goes largely unchecked. Originally published in 2007, Contesting the Corporation counters this view by showing that today's corporations are driven by political struggle, power plays and attempts to resist control. Building on a wide range of theoretical sources, Fleming and Spicer present an analysis of the different ways in which power operates within the modern workplace. They begin by building a theoretical perspective that synthesizes previous investigations of power and resistance, identifying struggle as a key concept. Each chapter illustrates a different dimension of workplace struggle through an array of original empirical studies relating to sexuality, cynicism, new social movements and new-wave trade unionism. The book concludes by demonstrating that social justice claims underlie even the most innocuous forms of resistance, helping to transform some of the largest modern corporations.
Review of the hardback: 'Contesting the Corporation offers a window on the corporate world that is too rarely viewed. Behind those many facades of contemporary corporate life stand real people, sometimes feeling trapped by their roles and the necessities of life, sometimes playing - ironically, cynically, creatively - with the demands that are made, or sometimes just exercising the right to be men and women and voice that which makes them different. In exploring these worlds, the reality of life contained and constrained by the corporation is dissected by the authors in terms of corporate and contested strategies of power, resistance and struggle.' Stewart Clegg, Professor of Organisational and Work Culture, University of Aston Business School
Review of the hardback: 'This book takes a refreshing new look at power and resistance in organizations. It provides the reader with an understanding of the ways in which diverse struggles pervade organizations, while reminding us that there is still hope for those who engage in them.' Cynthia Hardy, Professor of Management, University of Melbourne and Co-Director of the International Centre for Research in Organisational Discourse and Strategic Change (ICRODSC)
Review of the hardback: 'Struggle, according to the authors of this engagingly readable book, is a defining feature of the employment relation, the nexus linking power and resistance. Within a clearly articulated theoretical frame, they offer vividly described evidence of this claim across a wide range of contemporary workplaces.' Steven Lukes, Professor of Sociology, New York University