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  • Leigh, J - Atmospheres of mistrust and suspicion - AFC 2016-02-18

    Rights statement: The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Qualitative Social Work, 18 (2), 2017, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2017 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the Qualitative Social Work page: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/QSW on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/

    Accepted author manuscript, 326 KB, PDF document

    Available under license: CC BY-NC: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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Atmospheres of mistrust and suspicion: Theorising on conflict and affective practice in a child protection social work agency

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/03/2019
<mark>Journal</mark>Qualitative Social Work
Issue number2
Volume18
Number of pages17
Pages (from-to)212-228
Publication statusPublished
Early online date7/05/17
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Organisational conflict is normally recognised as a disruptive activity which interrupts relational dynamics and productivity. However, this paper will argue that in addition, if conflict is not resolved carefully, it can trigger negative affect which will in turn unsettle and destabilise a whole workforce. Based on the findings from an organisational ethnography, the author examines how conflict emerged in a child protection social work agency by theorizing on the concept of affective practice. In doing so, the author makes the argument that although affect emerges in interaction it can be exacerbated by the unintentional pursuit of problematic strategies. Examining affective practice in such a way enables studies to bring into play the atmospheric factors which impacted on those who were present at that moment so that readers can understand how people were moved, attracted to or pained by certain social interactions. This is important when trying to comprehend how coercive power approaches in social work prevent care objectives from being met. The paper will conclude by suggesting that when practitioners are preoccupied with trying to survive in the workplace they will find it difficult to meet the needs of the children and families they are working with.

Bibliographic note

The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, Qualitative Social Work, 18 (2), 2017, © SAGE Publications Ltd, 2017 by SAGE Publications Ltd at the Qualitative Social Work page: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/QSW on SAGE Journals Online: http://journals.sagepub.com/