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Papadopoulos, N. (2018). A Sociological Contribution to Social Defence Theory: Part One—Theory. Organ. Soc. Dyn., 18(2):226-246.

(2018). Organizational and Social Dynamics, 18(2):226-246

A Sociological Contribution to Social Defence Theory: Part One—Theory

Nick Papadopoulos, Ph.D.

Part One seeks to establish and develop the implicit sociology in Menzies' social defence theory (SDT). It uses Freud's revised theory of anxiety, concepts from Durkheim's sociology and focus on: ritual practices, the sociological distinction between social “forms” and their “content”, and two systemic tools of self-organisation and feedback loops. Part Two offers original research of an organisational consultation to bring Menzies into dialogue with anthropologist Mary Douglas to reconceptualise social defences as informal institutions subject to self-organisation and generating feedback loops or consequences back onto the individuals and organisation. The purpose is to improve SDT's ability to explain and facilitate organisational-level change and not just individual and group development.

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