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Emancipation Through Emotion Regulation at Work

Dirk Lindebaum

Emotion is often used by organisations to manipulate and repress workers. However, this repression can have adverse psychological and social consequences for them. This book articulates the pathways through which this repression occurs, and offers emotion regulation as a tool for workers to emancipate themselves from this repression and social control.
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Dirk Lindebaum


‘You are being aggressive . . . I am not having this anymore’ and, turning to another member of the cabin crew, the cabin manager added, ‘Inform the captain that this passenger should be received by police on arrival.’ This epiphany represents the climax of a dreadful experience we had (i.e., the two authors, a married couple) on a flight from Greece to the UK returning from our holidays in 2012 with our two young children (then aged nine months and three years). The tirade of threats was directed at one of us (the father), as we were both involved in a situation that had its roots in a confrontation between a fellow passenger (a 50+ quiet and friendly woman who sat behind us) and the cabin crew. A detailed description of the event can be found following this developmental paper in the form of a letter we sent to the airline (we loosely refer to the airline as the Orange-White Airline (OWA), just as we could refer to them as the Blue-White Airline).

As the letter indicates, at the heart of the situation was what we perceived to be a gross violation of what is measured, decent and fair treatment of others, especially if such acts are executed by individuals with formal power – i.e., the cabin manager has the power to initiate appropriate procedures to deal with disruptive passengers by requesting the pilot to get the police involved upon arrival, as the opening account suggests (see also Bor,...

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