And Rewind! Recycling Discourses of Knowledge Work and Knowledge Society

Taylor and Francis
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Management and Organizational History, 2013, 9 (1), pp. 1 - 23
Issue Date:
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While knowledge work is privileged by contemporary managerial discourse as a principal tenet of the present epoch, this paper examines an earlier knowledge society the Renaissance and argues that the contemporary designation of society as a `knowledge society is neither new nor unique. In contemporary discourse, much as during the Renaissance, institutional authorities sought to control unauthorized knowledge through disciplinary actions. There is also a parallel between the historical conditions that enabled the Renaissance to emerge and those preceding the emergence of a contemporary knowledge society. The paper argues that discourses of knowledge work and knowledge society may be seen as recycled, making what is old seem new again.
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