Linguistic Artifacts in Organizing and Managing

Ann L. Cunliffe

University of New Mexico

John Shotter

University of New Hampshire

Only in the stream of thought and life do words have meaning.

—Wittgenstein (1981, no. 173)

Perhaps what is inexpressible (what I find mysterious and am not able to express) is the background against which whatever 1 could express has its meaning.

—Wittgenstein (1980, p. 16)

For a large class of cases—though not for all—in which we employ the word “meaning” it can be defined thus: the meaning of a word is its use in the language.

—Wittgenstein (1953, no. 43)

Elsewhere we have discussed how managers create, in meetings with other organizational participants, meanings about the work that needs to go on within the ...

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