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[ecrea] Call for Papers : The Dark Side of Communication

Mon Oct 01 20:02:12 GMT 2018

*The Dark Side of Communication*

The 2^nd  International and Interdisciplinary Conference on Discourse and Communication in Professional Contexts will be held at Aalborg University, Denmark, August 14^th  – 16^th , 2019

Recent years have seen a veritable upsurge in research into organizational communication, PR communication, corporate communication, branding communication etc. Whereas this voluminous strand of research has delved ever deeper into the instrumental nature of organizational/corporate communication, so far little attention, outside organizational discourse studies, has been devoted to seriously examining what happens when we allow organizational/corporate communication to constitute the reality in which we live. Be it as employees or – in a wider sense – as citizens of late-modern societies.

The expression “the dark side” seems to have become a portmanteau term for all things unwanted. In strategic communication, “the dark side” pertains to (corporate) communication perceived as intentionally ambiguous – and maybe unlawfully so. In organization studies, “the dark side” encompasses deviant or even harmful organizational behavior. In interpersonal communication, “the dark side” deals with immoral, dysfunctional or malicious communication. In sum, by calling forth “the dark side” of communication we evoke a sort of Manichean discourse of light vs. dark, in casu: of good vs. evil communication. If we look at communication activities in organizational and/or professional contexts in lieu of this, it seems to be a question of whether communication is seen as manipulatory, i.e. as “dark”/evil, or emancipatory, i.e. as “light”/good. This, in turn, effectively stigmatizes dark side communication activities as vehicles for the (organizational or corporate) propagation of suppression of unwanted ethical, political, and ideological voices and discourses.

With The Dark Side of Communication as the conference theme, the Communicating Organizations Research Group wishes to explore and substantially deepen our understanding of what dark side communication activities ‘are’ and what they ‘do’ in or with reference to organizational contexts.

Confirmed keynote speakers for the conference are:

*- Professor Dennis Mumby, University of Carolina, Chapel Hill, USA*

*- Professor David Boje, New Mexico State University, USA *

*- Assoc. Professor Charlotte Simonsson, Lund University, Sweden*

*- Dr. Erika Darics, Aston University, UK *

With this conference, we encourage all interested scholars to explore and problematize issues such as, but not limited to:

  * What may constitute dark side communicating activities? And why?
  * Where do we find dark side communicating activities? And why?
  * How do we analyze dark side communicating activities?
  * Why are organizations (ostensibly) making use of dark side
    communicating activities?
  * How do we – as scholars as well as citizens – evaluate dark side
    communicating activities?

The conference takes place against a backdrop of organizational, corporate and professional communication, critical management studies, critical discourse studies, and critical media studies. Needless to say, all interested scholars from adjacent fields are highly encouraged to attend.

For further information, please visit the conference website: <>

Deadline for submission of panel proposals 15 December 2018.

Deadline for submission of individual abstracts 15 January 2019.

Needless to say, PhD students at any stage of their PhD work are also warmly encouraged to participate. Not only in the pre-conference PhD seminar, which takes place on August 13^th  2019, but indeed also in the conference proper.

The Communicating Organizations Research Group, Aalborg University, Denmark

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