To account is to be human

Ann-Christine Frandsen, Elton G McGoun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Humans have a proclivity for creating good-evil dualities. If accounting is
fundamentally naming and counting and if these good-evil dualities are examples of naming the two parts of the duality and counting one part counts more on a goodness scale than the other part, then this proclivity for creating good-evil dualities represents a proclivity for the practice of accounting. Through a chain of translations as described by Bruno Latour, the practice of accounting subsequently reproduces itself and infuses itself into more and more areas of daily life Latour 1987, 1998. The consequence of these assumptions
would be that accounting is an inherent characteristic of our humanity, and the expansion of accounting would be inevitable. To be human would be to account, and humanity would evolve to do more accounting. But is it?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
JournalAccounting and the Public Interest
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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