by Hubert Hermans, Agnieszka Hermans-Konopka
A very interesting, informative and challenging book that explores the multiple ways in which we see ourselves (“I” positions) and how we can use alternative I positions to help move towards more appropriate responses.
This book, which is probably two or three in one, starts by defining the view of “self” through history and links in the modern and post-modern perspectives before delving into how our internal dialogue impacts on our beliefs and behaviours in an emotional and change management sense for good or ill.
As the title would suggest this is not a light, easy read but is an academic tome which will repay careful reading (my copy is full of underlining, notes, scribbles and thoughts on how I can use some of the underlying themes in my management development work) and thought.
Whilst not specifically Constructivist the authors do have a close affinity with Constructivist ideals (and I recently had the please of attending some workshops run by the authors at a Constructivist conference in Boston ) and some of the key themes reflect this. For example one of the main themes is that of multiple voices (I positions) all existing within the self and rising to prominence or falling as necessary is very closely allied to the “Community of Selves” promoted by the late, great Miller Mair.