Hegemonic nature of sense-making narratives


Speaker:Andrew D. Brown, Nottingham University Business School
Date: Friday 21 March 2003
Time: 14:00
Location: Streatham Court room 221/2

Further details

This paper attempts a discourse analysis of the Cullen Report into the Piper Alpha disaster in order to research how public inquiry teams represent their efforts to make sense of events as authoritative. It is argued that inquiry reports are highly convention-governed sensemaking narratives that employ various forms of verisimilitude in order to bolster their authority. They are also monological storytelling performances that function hegemonically to impose a particular version of reality on their readers. The investigation of the means by which inquiry reports accomplish verisimilitude and hegemony are important as they may shed light on how this form of public discourse depoliticises disaster events, legitimates social institutions, and lessens anxieties by concocting myths that emphasize our omnipotence and capacity to control.