Master of Arts (MA)
First Committee Member
Richard J. Jensen
Number of Pages
The comic strip "Dilbert," created by Scott Adams, was analyzed to evaluate its accuracy and effectiveness in mirroring contemporary organizational communication. This historical case study utilized the methods proposed by Kathleen J. Turner (1977) to provide a rhetorical perspective of "Dilbert" and to demonstrate the reciprocal relationship between the comic and society. A three-pronged approach was applied to examine: (1) Precedents in comic strips and organizational communication; (2) Subject matter and dialogue; and (3) Character composition and artistic style. Conclusions indicate that Adams has astutely captured the dysfunctional nature of workplace communication in a unique form of discourse embraced by a worldwide audience. "Dilbert" is a representative sign of its times that has powerful rhetorical significance within popular culture.
Adams; Communication; Contemporary; Dilbert; Organizational; Reflection; Rhetorical; Scott Adams
Mass media; Rhetoric; Industrial relations
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
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Jedlinski, Beverly Ann, ""Dilbert": A rhetorical reflection of contemporary organizational communication" (1998). UNLV Retrospective Theses & Dissertations. 957.
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