ERIC Number: EJ833859
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 55
A Thematic Deconstruction of Formalist and Expertise Voices in Big Five (Four) Public Accounting Firms
Dirsmith, Mark W.; Samuel, Sajay; Covaleski, Mark A.; Heian, James B.
Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, v2 n1 p13-34 Mar 2005
Research has increasingly recognized the importance of rhetoric to organizational functioning. However, there remains a paucity of detailed analyses probing its nature, particularly in such contexts as public accounting. The purpose of this paper is to deconstruct two forms of rhetoric, which are prominent within international public accounting firms and are emblematic of two modes of governance that are dominant in contemporary society-bureaucracy and expertise. The first is the formalist voice, that focuses on the objectivity with which firms are managed by administrative partners; the second is the expertise voice, that focuses on the subjectivity of practice partners which is necessary for exercising professional judgment. It is concluded that the distinction between objectivity and subjectivity is inherently contentious as each is enlisted to supplement the shortcomings of the other in these firms. Instead they may be seen as involved in a relationship in which they are inexorably intertwined.
Descriptors: Rhetoric, Research Methodology, Accounting, Expertise, Administrative Principles, Evaluative Thinking, Organizational Theories, Language Role, Sociolinguistics, Organizational Change, Organizational Climate, Business, Influence of Technology, Economic Change, Economic Climate
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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