Communion economy: social responsibility, ideology and social representations

Maria Luisa Carvalho Pedrinho Guareschi About the authors

The article analyzes a peculiar case of social responsibility - the economy of communion (EdC) - trying to identify the social representations (Moscovici, 2003) that constitute it and whether they possess or not an ideological character (Thompson, 1995). The data were collected through visits to companies, participation in congresses, documental and bibliographical research and the analysis that was accomplished based on the depth hermeneutics (Thompson, 1995). The results indicated that, through representations of religious origin (profit as divine blessing), through other values accepted by capitalism (profit as a result of business competence) and of emerging representations (the entrepreneur as a model of ethics and competence), EdC accomplishes, ideologically, the function of legitimating the changes in the work relationships requested by the flexible models of administration and of suppressing the contradictions and social conflicts in a way that presents the entrepreneur as the great father, capable of offering sustenance, protection and affection to the poor and to the workers.

Economy of communion; Social responsibility; Social representations; Ideology

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