QROM Editorial 13,1 Power, subjectivity and context in workplace bullying, emotional abuse and harassment: insights from postpositivism Workplace bullying encompasses subtle and/or obvious negative behaviours embodying aggression, hostility, intimidation and harm. Generally characterized by persistence, these unwelcome acts are displayed by an individual and/or group to another individual and/or group at work, privately and/or publicly, in real and/or virtual forms (D’Cruz, 2015). Alternatively known as workplace emotional abuse or workplace harassment (and referred to as such henceforth), workplace bullying falls under the rubric of dysfunctional and counterproductive workplace behaviours (Fox and Spector, 2005) and is captured by metaphors of nightmares, demons, slaves and heart-brokenness (Tracy et al., 2006) which underscore its unbelievable, demoralizing, humiliating and damaging nature (Lutgen-Sandvik, 2005). It is not surprising, then, that workplace bullying is described as unethical behaviour which goes against universal social rules of acceptability (Ramsay et al., 2011). D’Cruz and Noronha (2016a, p. 409) have coined the term “varieties of workplace bullying” to describe the several types of emotional abuse at work known to date. These encompass the twin lines of level of analysis and location of the source of misbehaviour (D’Cruz, 2015, p. 72; D’Cruz and Noronha, 2016a, p. 413). Accordingly, bullying
Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 12, 2018
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