Resisting Organizational Power

  • Peggy DesAutels


Normative ethical theory should provide us with guidance for how to live moral lives in a world filled with inequity and abuse of power. In this essay, I address ways that features of resisting organizational power do and do not overlap with features of resisting oppression more generally. I examine the potential for moral damage to individuals who resist organizational power, and argue that the traits necessary for successful whistleblowing are similar to what Lisa Tessman refers to as ‘burdened virtues’—they are necessary to successfully resisting organizational power, but ‘costly to the selves who bear them.’ I conclude by offering a preliminary sketch of the traits of a virtuous resister.


Whistleblowing Virtue ethics Moral psychology Oppression Feminist ethics 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of DaytonDaytonUSA

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