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ERIC Number: EJ922388
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0309-0590
Muted Voices: A Critical Look at E-Male in Organizations
Kissack, Heather
Journal of European Industrial Training, v34 n6 p539-551 2010
Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to conceptually discuss whether and how feminine voice is muted within e-mails in organizations; the implications of which are substantial and far-reaching for human resource development (HRD) professionals as well as the HRD field as a whole. Design/methodology/approach: Utilizing the approach and arguments in muted group theory, the author conceptually applies these tenets to organizational e-mail. Findings: Current gender-preferential research concentrates on the textual polarity of male- and female-preferential language. These language differences carry over to organizational e-mail despite the lack of contextual cues within e-mail as well as the masculine nature of organizations. A critical assessment of these findings, rooted in muted group theory, reveals that women's voice is not merely marginalized (i.e. is present, but relegated to the margin), but it is mute (i.e. is not even present because it has no authentic language with which to use). Research limitations/implications: Future research should concentrate on ways in which women remain muted and strategies to "un-mute" them such that they are able to utilize a language reflective of their own experiences. Practical implications: Diversity trainers who seek to incorporate diversity into organizations must look at the deeply entrenched assumptions of a culture that embraces likeness rather than difference. Many norms and taken for granted day to day procedures, such as e-mail exchange, foster, and reinforce resistance to diversity. Originality/value: The paper urges researchers, practitioners and academics to continue to analyze critically the muteness of women in organizations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A