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    Reason's Neglect: Rationality and Organizing

    By: Barbara Townley

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    Reason, and the need to Be Rational, are essential dimensions of society and the organizations we live and work in. Yet the 'rationalization' of working and administrative processes, or the 'rationality' studied in social sciences, is all too often, used, understood, and interpreted in an extremely narrow sense. Reason's Neglect does three things. Firstly, it argues that rationality is a leitmotif of organization studies, but one that has often been neglected. Secondly, it deploys Foucault's work to recover the neglected dimensions of rationality. In doing this, it allows for a revisionary exploration of key subjects in organization studies: organization theory, bureaucracy, technology, culture, practice, etc. Finally, the book presents the case of new rational management techniques beingintroduced in an organization, allowing individuals to 'speak for themselves', and examining how they respond to these innovations, and how they make sense of them. Arguing that rationality should be seen as disembedded, embedded, or embodied, each chapter goes on to explore a different aspect of reason, such as economic, bureaucratic, technocratic, institutional, or contextual. Clearly written and structured, yet an engaged and challenging approach to the study of organizations in society, Reason's Neglect is an iconoclastic book.

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