Book Briefs: The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power

By CIOinsight  |  Posted 02-01-2004
The Corporation: The Pathological Pursiut of Profit and Power
By Joel Bakan
Free Press, March 2004
240 pages, $25

Bakan, a law professor at the University of British Columbia, thinks that companies are, by definition, antisocial, aggressive and amoral, and that they act without empathy or remorse. In other words, companies are inherently psychopathic. Perhaps he would be right, if corporations were just theoretical constructs, but in the real world, companies don't actually do anything; it's the people who run corporations who control their actions. One supposes that a truly psychopathic company wouldn't attract many customers. Why pay attention to Bakan's argument? His book is the basis of a film with the same title that got a lot of attention at the recent Sundance Film Festival, so it might come up at your next dinner party.