Don Quixote and the Problem of Idealism and Realism in Business Ethics

Business Ethics Quarterly 8 (1):43-63 (1998)
I discuss the characters Don Quixote and Sancho Panza and their relationship in order to understand better the place of idealistictheory and realistic practice in business ethics. The realism of Sancho Panza is required to make the idealism of Don Quixote effective.Indeed, the interaction and development of these characters can serve as a model for both the effective communication between andblending of the idealistic moral theoretician and the practical businessperson. Specifically, I argue that a quixotified Sancho Panza,as a combination of theoretical idealism and practical realism, is necessary for managerial statesmanship. I first consider the positionthat this concept is unrealistic. In the final section, however, I show that a number of leadership and business theorists believe thatmanagerial statesmanship requires a quixotified Sancho Panza. I also consider the question, what helps to make a quixotic vision forbusiness ethical, and what is its content?
Keywords Applied Philosophy  Business and Professional Ethics  Social Science
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ISBN(s) 1052-150X  
DOI 10.2307/3857521
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Aesthetics as a Foundation for Business Activity.John Dobson - 2007 - Journal of Business Ethics 72 (1):41-46.
Aesthetic Style as a Postructural Business Ethic.John Dobson - 2010 - Journal of Business Ethics 93 (3):393 - 400.
Aesthetic Style as a Postructural Business Ethic.John Dobson - 2010 - Journal of Business Ethics 93 (3):393-400.

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