As discussed earlier, radical analysis of organization and management must be located within an analysis of the wider societal totality. As Burrell and Morgan state, ‘totality’ implies ‘that organizations can only be understood in terms of their place within a total context, in terms of the wider social formation within which they exist and which they reflect’ (Burrell and Morgan 1979: 368). The total context for the analysis of the two organizations studied here involves, in particular, the significant contradictions and changes in the relations of production, class relations, and the state; these must be identified and related to the tendencies and events in particular concrete situations. Thus an adequate understanding of the emergent events in both the Bus Garage Project and the Charlton Training Centre can only be achieved by uncovering the processes of determination arising from within the wider totality. Before examining the details of the events described we will therefore examine the context in which they were situated.