Faciality and the Assembly of Organizational Subjectivity: Considering the Possibilities of Emancipation in Management Theory

Eric K Austin, Ryan Rouse


One ongoing theme in management theory focuses on mitigating the dehumanizing effects of
organizational systems and related forms power over employees. Perhaps paradoxically, the
alienating tendencies of neoliberalism resulted in various humanist and emancipatory theories
intended to mitigate that alienation, which operate in a way that almost exclusively benefits
the organization and subtly yet profoundly subjugates the worker. Critiques of contemporary
management theory and practice, most notably by critical management studies and psychoanalytic theory, made important contributions in revealing many of the pernicious mechanisms and resulting effects of human relations approaches. However, in our assessment these critiques still struggle to respond to the emergent socioeconomic and political structures of neoliberalism. As an alternative, this article considers Deleuze and Guattari’s (1987) work on faciality in order to re-examine the form and function of those structures in a way that explains their perniciousness and suggests that there is a space within those structures for a more liberated form of subjectivity.


facilality; sgnification; subjectivity

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