When Orders of Worth Clash: Negotiating Legitimacy in Situations of Moral Multiplexity

J. Reinecke, K. van Bommel, A. Spicer

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How is moral legitimacy established in pluralist contexts where multiple moral frameworks co-exist and compete? Situations of moral multiplexity complicate not only whether an organization or practice is legitimate but also which criteria should be used to establish moral legitimacy. We argue that moral legitimacy can be thought of as the property of a dynamic dialogical process in which relations between moral schemes are constantly (re-)negotiated through dynamic exchange with audiences. Drawing on Boltanski and Thévenot’s ‘orders of worth’ framework, we propose a process model of how three types of truces may be negotiated: transcendence, compromise, antagonism. While each can create moral legitimacy in pluralistic contexts, legitimacy is not a binary variable but varying in degrees of scope and certainty.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationJustification, Evaluation and Critique in the Study of Organizations
Subtitle of host publicationContributions from French Pragmatist Sociology
EditorsCharlotte Cloutier, Jean-Pascal Gond, Bernard Leca
Number of pages40
ISBN (Electronic)9781787143791
ISBN (Print)9781787143807
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameResearch in the Sociology of Organizations
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
ISSN (Print)0733-558X


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