Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dr. Randy Rose


This thesis examines existing research and theory on metaphors, organizational culture and organizational change. It focuses on the application of the “Fish Philosophy” metaphor in a changing culture of an organization to determine how, when and why this metaphor is used. The analysis of discourse observed in meeting, office cubes, cafeteria as well as the content analysis of documents (newsletters, email messages, photographs, videotapes) were among the methods used to conduct this study. Metaphors and metaphoric discourse play an important pole in developing and maintaining shared meanings among organizational members while shaping and reshaping an organization’s culture and communication process. The study contributes to existing theory and research in organizational communication and organizational change by analyzing the functions of metaphors and metaphorical discourse and how they are used in organizations.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Communication and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright 2003 Hilda K. Byabato.