The absent follower:identity construction in organizationally assigned leader-follower relations

Schedlitzki, Doris and Edwards, Gareth and Kempster, Stephen John (2018) The absent follower:identity construction in organizationally assigned leader-follower relations. Leadership, 14 (4). pp. 483-503. ISSN 1742-7150

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Abstract

This article seeks to add to our understanding of processes of identity construction within organizationally assigned leader-follower relations through an exploration of the role of the absent, feminised follower. We situate our work within critical and psychoanalytic contributions to leader/ship and follower/ship and use Lacan’s writings on identification and lack to illuminate the imaginary, failing nature of identity construction. This aims to challenge the social realist foundations of writing on leader-follower constellations in organizational life. We examine our philosophical discussion through a reflective reading of a workplace example and question the possibility of a subject’s identity construction as a follower. If a subject is unable to identify him/herself as follower, he/she cannot validate others as leaders, rendering the leader-follower relationship not only fragile but phantasmic. We highlight implications of our exploration of the absence of follower/ship and endless, unfulfilled desire for leader/ship for future research and practice.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Leadership
Additional Information:
The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Leadership, 14 (4), 2018, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2018 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the Leadership page: http://journals.sagepub.com/home/lea on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/aacsb/disciplinebasedresearch
Subjects:
ID Code:
84477
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
31 Jan 2017 15:08
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
19 Sep 2020 04:27