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ERIC Number: EJ900011
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Feb
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 102
ISSN: ISSN-0003-1224
The Myth Incarnate: Recoupling Processes, Turmoil, and Inhabited Institutions in an Urban Elementary School
Hallett, Tim
American Sociological Review, v75 n1 p52-74 Feb 2010
The study of institutional myths has been central to organizational sociology, cultural sociology, and the sociology of education for 30 years. This article examines how the myth concept has been used and develops neglected possibilities by asking: What happens when myths become incarnate, and how does this occur? In other words, what happens when conformity to a rationalized cultural ideal such as "accountability" is no longer symbolic but is given tangible flesh? Data from a two-year ethnography of an urban elementary school provide answers and reveal "recoupling" processes through which institutional myths and organizational practices that were once loosely connected become tightly linked. In the school studied here, recoupling accountability with classroom practices created a phenomenon that teachers labeled "turmoil." The findings advance our understanding of the micro-sociological foundations of institutional theory by "inhabiting" institutionalism with people, their work activities, social interactions, and meaning-making processes. (Contains 17 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A