CAIRN-INT.INFO : International Edition

Preventive coaching is studied here through the prism of the pharmakon (remedy, poison, makeup, scapegoat). Applied to a preventive management plan or to a signifier such as bullying, this notion makes it possible to account for the centrality and the circularity of symbolic violence, implying the issue of the prevention of psychosocial risks. Moreover, this analysis leads us to the hypothesis of a shift from risk prevention to the issue of psychosocial debt. We used discourse theory to describe the circulation of pharmakon signifiers between the sites and social uses of knowledge production, in order to make a distinction between academic discourse on prevention and the polemic machine of prevention/pervention, driven by resentment. Finally, complementary analytical frameworks have enabled us to describe a kind of value reversal of prevention that we call pervention. Therefore, preventive coaching is exposed as a remedy (a pharmacology metaphor), but also as a presenting symptom of the unease of prevention (immunology and war studies metaphors). This analysis brings some practical and ethical issues to the attention of stakeholders.

  • Preventive coaching
  • pharmakon signifier
  • pervention
  • psychosocial debt
  • discourses and machines
  • psychosocial risks
  • symbolic violence
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