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L'autorité comme base normative de l'organisation

Abstract : From authority to authorization The authority of established governments has recently been challenged to an extent that is exceptional: the "arab spring," for example, leading to the overthrow or challenge to régimes that have exercised power for decades, in tunisia, libya, egypt, Bahrain, Syria; in europe the populist response to official efforts to buttress the Euro; in America, the "Occupy Wall Street" movement and its numerous look-alikes. in my talk i will explore the meaning of authority, as a communicative phenomenon.authority, as a topic, has seldom been addressed in communication studies, and even when it has the treatment has been by and large superficial. In my talk, therefore, I will first address the question of what authority is, with emphasis on the communicative mechanisms that explain its foundation and modalities. i will argue, in particular, that authority is no more than a surface manifestation of the more important phenomenon of what i call authoring.[1] the word "author," both in French and in english, typically connotes an individual or small group who writes a text that may then become a locus of authority (Hannah arendt, , has elaborated on this interpretation). i will argue for a different reading of authority by treating authoring as a feature of all human communication: it is how people account for what is happening, by narrating it, and thus make sense of their experience, a phenomenon that Karl Weick (1979) termed "enactment." authoring is therefore a continuous, not a sometime event. it is continually generated in the communication activities of all those members who constitute the organization as an entity. To the extent that the authority of a régime is in relative harmony with authoring, as a diffuse phenomenon continually generated in the many conversations of the organization, then there is comparative (if never total) harmony. it is when the gulf between the two widens and becomes intolerable that there is the extent that time permits, i will develop a general hypothesis on one source of such a gulf. i will argue that communication technology is one such driver. if authoring is a diffuse phenomenon, part of a process that stabilizes in networks of people who share a world of experience, and soon settle into stable grooves of regular configurations, then changes in communication technology first disrupt those established patterns of interaction, thus stimulating altered and more tenuous configurations of authority. Significant contradictions to the established régime's capacity to deal with these disruptions may appear, and undermine what had previously taken to be the organization's legitimate basis of authority.[1] This refinement turned out to lead to complications in translating from English to French. The word "author," in english, can be used as either noun or verb. as a verb, "to author," may have no explicit subject or object, and thus "authoring" can be treated as an open-ended process. in French, "author" (auteur) is always a noun ("un auteur," "l'auteur"), and automatically implies a correlate "authored," namely a text. How to render "authoring," a process, in French? François Cooren (personal communication) suggests introducing a neologism as a possible solution, "auteurisation," or even better, "processus auteurisant", or "processus d'auteurisation", namely an ongoing and continuous authorship. this distinguishes it from the more usual "autorisation" (or, in English, "authorization," which has a different meaning, in French as well as english).
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Submitted on : Monday, July 22, 2013 - 3:37:42 PM
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  • HAL Id : hal-00835844, version 2



James R. Taylor. L'autorité comme base normative de l'organisation. Communiquer dans un monde de normes. L'information et la communication dans les enjeux contemporains de la " mondialisation "., Mar 2012, France. pp.178. ⟨hal-00835844v2⟩



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