Edited by Mattias Nordqvist, Leif Melin, Mattias Waldkirch and Gershon Kumeto
Chapter 12: Critical pedagogy theory and the family business
In contemporary times family business research has been dominated by three theoretical perspectives: principal–agent theory, stewardship theory and resource-based view theory but at the same time scholars argue that what still needs further attention is how underlying processes and phenomena can be explained. In order to understand themes such as repression or relations of asymmetry the suggestion in this chapter is to move towards a critical stance of thinking which involves problematising the obvious issues in family firms and moreover allowing the critical perspective to destabilise assumptions made within earlier research. By discussing critical theory in general, but foremost the Freirean critical pedagogy specifically, the arguments in the chapter revolve around how critical pedagogy can open up a more novel view on family business. Critical pedagogy is used to discuss family business from a limited situation perspective, and to argue for a Freirean dialogue as a means of developing a critical consciousness for family members in the family business context. The chapter concludes with some recommendations on platforms or common ground in which dialogue and raising of consciousness can occur in which the concept can open up possibilities for interesting learning transfer and bring multidimensional knowledge into the family firm. Keywords: family business, critical theory, Freire, critical pedagogy, conscientização, critical consciousness, dialogue, limited situations, untested possibilities, triple hermeneutics
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