Focus: Badiou, Business, Ethics
Beneath good and evil?
Version of Record online: 15 SEP 2013
© 2013 The Author. Business Ethics: A European Review © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
Business Ethics: A European Review
Volume 22, Issue 4, pages 380–392, October 2013
How to Cite
Lennerfors, T. T. (2013), Beneath good and evil?. Business Ethics: A European Review, 22: 380–392. doi: 10.1111/beer.12030
- Issue online: 15 SEP 2013
- Version of Record online: 15 SEP 2013
The aim of this paper is to think business ethics with the help of philosopher Alain Badiou, focusing on Badiou's critique of ethics and the concepts of ‘event’, ‘truth’ and especially ‘subject’. Based mainly on review articles, I construct an understanding of business ethics (comprising corporate social responsibility and sustainability) and its history as a field of research. With the help of a framework developed from Badiou's work on ethics, I conduct a metacritique of business ethics as being intolerant (exclusion of voices), nihilist (concerned with necessity and economics), reactive (to social movements in the 1960s, arguing that there has always been an ethics of business) and obscure (building upon the atemporal body of knowledge in ethics). Opposed to these tendencies, with the help of the constructive Badiou, I argue that business ethics should move towards the creation of faithful subjects possibly formed by ‘inexistent’ research in the field, as well as concerning itself with closely studying and identifying empirical cases of faithful subject formations and their deviations.