“A force, not a labour, a struggle not a thought”: Applying the concept of Duende to ethical dilemmas at work

Conference, Audio, Video or Powerpoint Presentation

Title: “A force, not a labour, a struggle not a thought”: Applying the concept of Duende to ethical dilemmas at work
Year: 2016
Authors: Dr Kate Dempsey

This paper investigates the responses of 49 business leaders to questions of ethics, morality and the future of work in a recent study. The study was done for a company offering outsourced employee assistance programs and was conducted over a period of 12 months using face-to-face, taped interviews. Nearly half of the respondents were espoused Christians, very active in their belief, but their beliefs were an unspoken or uncomfortable part of their business lives.

A psychoanalytically informed interpretation of the results supports the observation that for Christian business leaders, the differences between business and Christian narratives brings about defensive splitting, and the consequent impoverishment of creativity. The analysis uses the Kleinian concept of splitting and applies the work of Donald Winnicott (1960) on the development of the ‘false self’ to the workplace and to religious belief.

The larger question of how we know what is ethical is opened up by the poet Lorca, in a way that may be helpful in speaking about Christians who have belief in an Other, but who have then accepted that the Otherness of God is subject to their work selves.

Keywords: Ethics, Business, Christians, Belief, Splitting
Language: English

Date: 06/24/2016
Location: Granada, Spain
Name of Event/Conference: 33rd ISPSO Annual Meeting
Sponsoring Organization: ISPSO

Submitted by:
Kate Dempsey

Corresponding author: Kate Dempsey

Literature Download:

To receive the paper, please contact the author directly

By downloading the file you agree to comply with the Terms of Use / Guidelines of the ISPSO Library and the copyright/authority information for this Literature (above).

If there is no filename in a link below then a download has not been provided.
Members-only Downloads are via the members-only zone of the website.

External website Download

Local Download

No files attached to this page.

Members-only Download

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License