Prisoners of Myth : The Leadership of the Tennessee Valley Authority, 1933-1990 / Erwin C. Hargrove.Material type: BookSeries: Princeton Studies in American Politics: Historical, International, and Comparative Perspectives ; 39.Publisher: Princeton, NJ : Princeton University Press, Copyright date: ©1994Edition: Course Book.Description: 1 online resource.Content type: text Media type: computer Carrier type: online resourceISBN: 9781400821532.Subject(s): Electric utilities -- Tennessee River Valley -- Management -- History | Government corporations -- United States -- Management -- History | Leadership | HISTORY / United States / 20th CenturyDDC classification: 353.0082/3/09768 Online resources: Click here to access online | Cover
Frontmatter -- Contents -- Preface -- Acknowledgments -- CHAPTER 1. History and Theory -- PART I: The Founding Generation -- CHAPTER 2. Visions of an Institution -- CHAPTER 3. Lilienthal's TVA: The Politics of Leadership -- CHAPTER 4. The Development of TVA Organizational Culture -- CHAPTER 5. The Organization in Action -- EPILOGUE: PART I The Past as Prologue -- PART II: Prisoners of Myth -- CHAPTER 6. Consolidating Leadership: Clapp and Vogel -- CHAPTER 7. Rise and Fall of the Dynamo -- CHAPTER 8. The Politics of Organizational Renewal -- CHAPTER 9. Denouement -- EPILOGUE: PART II New Departures -- CHAPTER 10. Reflections -- Notes -- Index
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Prisoners of Myth is the first comprehensive history of the Tennessee Valley Authority from its creation to the present day. It is also a telling case study of organizational evolution and decline. Building on Philip Selznick's classic work TVA and the Grass Roots (1949), a seminal text in the theoretical study of bureaucracy, Erwin Hargrove analyzes the organizational culture of the TVA by looking at the actions of its leaders over six decades--from the heroic years of the New Deal and World War II through the postwar period of consolidation and growth to the time of troubles from 1970 onward, when the TVA ran afoul of environmental legislation, built a massive nuclear power program that it could not control, and sought new missions for which there were no constituencies.The founding myth of multipurpose regional development was inappropriately pursued in the 1970s and '80s by leaders who became "prisoners of myth" in their attempt to keep the TVA heroic. A decentralized organization, which had worked well at the grass roots, was difficult to redirect as the nuclear genii spun out of control. TVA autonomy from Washington, once a virtue, obscured political accountability. This study develops an important new theory about institutional performance in the face of historical change.
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Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page (publisher's Web site, viewed 08. Jul 2019)