Book Chapter: “Dream on—There is no Salvation!”: Transforming Shame in the South African Workplace Through Personal and Organisational Strategies. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-53100-7_6
Abstract: Shame is a concept widely researched in psychology and it has been contextualised across racial groups, cultures, nationalities and gender. In the sub-Saharan African context, shame has been studied particularly with regard to HIV/AIDS and cultural traditions. However, it seems that most of the studies conducted do not focus on, firstly, the work context or, secondly, shame as a possible health resource, but rather as a construct that is related to negatively perceived concepts, such as guilt, embarrassment or stigma. In the sub-Saharan African context, there is a dearth of studies providing an overview of the research studies conducted on shame in sub-Saharan African contexts. The chapter provides an overview on research of shame in sub-Saharan African contexts. It further on explores shame experiences in South African workplaces and presents personal and organisational strategies to transform shame constructively. The research methodology used was based on an interpretative hermeneutical paradigm and applied qualitative research methods, such as semi-structured interviews with individuals from various higher education institutions (HEI) and observations at one HEI in particular. The chapter presents new insights and findings on which experiences in the workplaces lead to shame and how employees manage these experiences to overcome negative impacts of shame on individual and organisational levels.Recommendations for future theory and practice are provided.
Abstract: The focus of this chapter is on shame from a systems psychodynamic perspective. An experience of shame in the form of a case study, conducted by Mayer and Tonelli (The value of shame: exploring a health resource in cultural contexts. Springer, Cham, pp. 110–135, 2017) is presented. The case study forms part of a larger research project on shame in South African organisations and serves as an example of how shame may be experienced by an individual and a system. A coaching model is applied to the case study as a possible method of transforming shame in an organisational and professional context. Presented from a view that individuals and organisations operate on both conscious and unconscious levels as part of larger groups, systems and networks.