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Contemporary Critical Perspectives

Second Edition
Edited by:
Additional resources:

Leadership | Leadership

April 2019 | 384 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Written from a global and critical perspective with a diverse range of cases and examples throughout, this is an inspiring read for developing leaders operating within global and multicultural work settings.

‘Power’ is taken as central theme for this book, opening up discussion about issues that are often neglected in leadership texts i.e. fairness, equity, justice, resistance, conflict, emancipation, oppression, rationality, politics, globalization, the natural environment, and knowledge.

New to this edition:

  • A new prologue: ‘An Unconventional History of Leadership Studies'
  • A new epilogue on ‘Embodied Leadership, Ethics, and its Affects’ written by David Knights, one of the authors of Embodied Research Methods (pub April 2019)
  • 3 new topical integrative case studies, based on current events: Jacinda Ardern’s pregnancy when PM; #MeToo; and Suma Foods co-operative
  • Updated research and pedagogical features throughout, including the ‘Leadership on Screen’ feature

The book is complemented by a range of online resources including PowerPoint slides, videos of the book’s authors providing an overview of the chapter and discussing why the topic is important, access to journal articles discussed in the book, and links to additional relevant material.

Table Of Contents
Suze Wilson
Prologue: An Unconventional History of Leadership Studies
Part I: Classical Theories of Leadership
Donna Ladkin
Chapter 1: Leadership, Management and Headship: Power, Emotion and Authority in Organizations
Scott Taylor
Chapter 2: Trait Theories of Leaders and Leadership: From Ancient Greece to Twenty-first-century Neuroscience
John Cullen
Chapter 3: Leading through Contingencies
Helen Delaney and Sverre Spoelstra
Chapter 4: Transformational Leadership: Secularized Theology?
Suze Wilson
Part II: Leading in Context
Brigid Carroll
Chapter 5: Leadership Learning and Development
Annie Pye
Chapter 6: Leadership, Governance and Strategy
Amanda Sinclair and Michelle Evans
Chapter 7: Difference and Leadership
Nancy Harding
Chapter 8: Studying Followers
PART III: Contemporary Perspectives
Simon Kelly
Chapter 9: Leadership and Process
Lucia Crevani
Chapter 10: Relational Leadership
Neil Sutherland
Chapter 11: Leadership without Leaders: Understanding Anarchist Organizing through the Lens of Critical Leadership Studies
Jackie Ford
Chapter 12: Leadership, Post-structuralism and the Performative Turn
Owain Smolovic-Jones and Brad Jackson
Chapter 13: Seeing Leadership: Becoming Sophisticated Consumers of Leadership
David Knights
Epilogue: Embodied Leadership, Ethics and its Affects


Click for online resources

For Instructors

  • PowerPoint slides

For Students:

  • Videos of the book’s authors providing an overview of the chapter and discussing why the topic is important.
  • Links to SAGE journal articles
  • Links to additional resources

Smart, provocative, and sometimes irreverent, this book provokes students and practitioners to think realistically about the nature of leadership and how it emerges and functions. Readers will discover how context, history, and factors such as gender, race, and ethnicity, shape the way that leadership manifests itself in organizations and society.

Professor Joanne B. Ciulla
Rutgers Business School

"Mainstream leadership research remains mired in a hopeless infatuation with overblown images of heroic leadership. Leadership in ‘the real world’ is much more complex than that. Each chapter in this immensely wise and well-written book shows us how to think differently about leadership. A compelling read."

Professor Dennis Tourish
University of Sussex Business School

"Finally a book on leadership that I can use in graduate as well as executive teaching – and enjoy myself! It’s equally informative, reflexive, provoking and entertaining: pedagogical without losing edge. On top of that the authors have made it really easy to teach from as it’s full of reflexive exercises and relevant case studies."

Professor Sara Louise Muhr
Copenhagen Business School

very current and well written, This book will complement the leadership power points and activities that are currently in my leadership module. This book will be added to other leadership modules.

Dr Tracy Ruth Ross
Acute Adult Care, Chester University
September 24, 2019

This is an excellent book, well written and covers all the relevant topics in leadership. It suitable for both undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Dr Denis Hyams-Ssekasi
Bolton Business School, Bolton University
August 16, 2019

A comprehensive book that provides leadership skills for working within global and multicultural work settings.

Ms Fungisai Mushawa
Department of Social Work and Health, Nottingham Trent University
June 5, 2020

this text brings to the fore critical perspectives of leadership, widening thinking for students at masters level.

Mrs Victoria Bamsey
Plymouth Institute of Education, Plymouth University
July 8, 2019

this book enhances the knowledge of the student. Giving them new areas for thought and self reflection about their own leadeship skills

Mr Michael Donaldson
Care Humatities and sport, North Glasgow Collge
April 29, 2020

This book is innovatively written, nice reading, interesting, with good case studies that are current. It is a suitable book for a high level of a master class, or as an elective Ph.D. reading for the first year of a management Ph.D. The contemporary perspective is especially interesting. I am a non-native English speaker so I highly appreciate the book's clear, easily readable English language.

Dr Zsuzsanna Kispal-Vitai
Faculty of Business & Economics, University of Pecs
May 22, 2019

This is a very good book that takes the students from classics to contemporary issues in leadership. The case studies, further thinking, stop and reflect are very useful to stimulate discussion in tutorials.

Ms Marilia Angove
Glamorgan Business School, University of South Wales (Glamorgan)
June 4, 2019

For instructors

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