Antenarratives and Heteroglossia in Organizational Storytelling:

A Living Medium Shaping the Future of Organizations in the Quantum Age

  • Marita Svane
Keywords: Quantum, Tamara Land,, Ecological, Multimodal, Heteroglossia, Materiality, Sociomaterial, Ethic, Antenarrative, Bakhtin


The literature on storytelling organizations presents a rich tradition for studying both narratives and living stories. These two storytelling dimensions tends to be viewed in opposition to each other. This paper focus on a third dimension: antenarratives. Antenarratives have two distinct features: they tell the story of the future of the organization in advance of its arrival and, as part of this process, they resolve tensions between narratives and living stories. Applying Bakhtin’s notion of heteroglossia, the purpose of this paper is further to enlighten the antenarrative processes of bridging the gap between narratives and living stories in prospective sensemaking of the future of the organization. Taking into account the quantum turn within social and human sciences and philosophies, the paper aims at enriching our understanding of how human and non-human voices take part in antenarrative processes of creating organizational futures. Antenarratives are therefore further conceptualized in the context of the quantum age. By bringing to the fore essential ecological aspects of Bakhtin’s work and reading these aspects into his notion of heteroglossia, the paper offers a Bakhtinian-inspired lens through which antenarrative human-world relationships can be further enlightened. The paper suggests viewing the organization and its relationship with the environment as a living antenarrative medium creating future worlds in the quantum age. Furthermore, the paper suggests implications for the practice of managing the antenarrative living medium of creating new worlds. The paper advocates the inclusion of ethical, material, embodied and multimodal perspectives on storytelling, thereby advancing a storytelling philosophy in the quantum age.

How to Cite
Svane, M. (2019). Antenarratives and Heteroglossia in Organizational Storytelling:. Communication & Language at Work, 6(1), 63-77.