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The antinomies of audit: opacity, instability and charisma in the economic governance of a Hooghly shipyard

Bear, Laura (2013) The antinomies of audit: opacity, instability and charisma in the economic governance of a Hooghly shipyard. Economy and Society, 42 (3). pp. 375-397. ISSN 0308-5147

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Identification Number: 10.1080/03085147.2013.791509


This paper rethinks audit regimes from the shadow-land of outsourcing in India. This is the arena of informalized work environments that are connected to global value chains and the revenue streams of an extractive liberalization state focused on public debt repayment. Based on ethnography of one such work-place, Venture Ltd shipyard in Howrah, it argues that in such settings audit creates opacity, disorders the work process and is part of value chains supported by diverse forms of charisma and racial distinction. As a result of these antinomies, testing events are times of friction rather than of the enactment of a shared calculative reason. Overall this case suggests that we need to focus more on the disordered capitalism supported by audit regimes.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: Anthropology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5601 Accounting
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D7 - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making > D74 - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances
M - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting > M4 - Accounting and Auditing > M42 - Auditing
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2013 08:22
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 02:04
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council

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