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Accountants' TruthKnowledge and Ethics in the Financial World$
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Matthew Gill

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199547142

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199547142.001.0001

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(p.110) 7 Ethics
Accountants' Truth

Matthew Gill

Oxford University Press

Ethical debates in accounting are often hazardous or taboo, and accountants have recourse to various strategies of equivocation in order to avoid them. They consequently lack a robust collective ethical discourse, although many seem to find this regrettable when speaking in a personal capacity. The chapter explores how and when accountants do use explicitly ethical language, and the implications of doing so in their social context. It concludes that accountants' difficulties in talking about ethics are problematic for both individual accountants and the profession.

Keywords:   professional ethics, employee ethics, legalism, equivocation, corruption, ethical discourse

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