Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department

Professional Communication

Committee Chair/Advisor

Katz, Steven B

Committee Member

Haynes , Cynthia A

Committee Member

Williams , Sean D


Organizations have the power to establish the norms of discourse within various fields through organizational style guides. These style guides determine the conventions of discourse that professionals use every day. In this thesis, I explore and articulate the ideological context of some style guides in prominent professions. The institutionalization of discourse is seen through the history of style manuals and is particularly noted within the discourse of contemporary organizations that create style guides. Through an application of the theories of Foucault and Habermas, I discuss how these organizations institutionalize discourse and perpetuate a system of purposive-rational action. In this thesis, I offer an ideological critique of contemporary organizations that publish style guides and perhaps a potential methodology for future investigation.

Included in

Communication Commons



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