Buddhist Avadānas. Socio-Political Economic and Cultural by Sharmistha Sharma

By Sharmistha Sharma

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Sample text

I don’t know how big the offices will be, but undoubtedly we’ll be split, whereas we’ve got the big team room, haven’t we, and that’s why I think the banter’s so good. I mean we’ve got the antiques corner that we call it at the top end [laughs], and then we’ve got us down the bottom like, and the banter that goes to and fro there, you know . . (Sally, social worker) In fact, the increase in the size of the team meant that the team had to ‘split up’ before the relocation took place. As more members of the team arrived, two social workers were asked to move from the main office into a smaller room to make more space.

Simultaneously, other aspects of the culture will coalesce within subcultural boundaries and still other elements of the culture will be fragmented, in a state of constant flux, and infused with confusion, doubt, and paradox. (Martin 1992: 4) Consequently, each perspective is associated with its own distortions and exclusions. For instance, an ‘integration’ study that emphasises unity and clarity is likely to ignore the ambiguities and conflicts within that organisation; a ‘differentiation’ study may exclude similarities between subcultures or confusion within them.

Their professional separation also involved a perceived difference in the legitimating principles through which their work was organised. The detachment from other social work teams was emphasised by other important aspects of members’ experiences. Practitioners described youth justice work as having a ‘culture’ that was starkly different to the dominant culture of social work. Stereotypical social workers were described as middle-class women who tended towards a woolly, patronising attitude. As Mark, the YOT manager, joked to the new practitioners from partner agencies: 34 j:book 12-12-2006 p:35 c:0 Experiences and problems of team membership I don’t want you to become social workers.

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