Playwrights work from a vantage point that enables them to bring to light aspects of social structures that are obliterated by the same social structures. Henrik Ibsen was particularly astute in making the public see not just what it was not aware of, but also what the establishment of the time did not wish to see. In line with the general theme of the 22nd EGOS Colloquium in Bergen, Norway, July 2006 (‘The organizing society’), a concern was expressed to what extent we as organization scholars succeed in stirring debate beyond our scholarly community by directing attention to potentially controversial aspects of society. The question posed to the panellists in particular, whose edited contributions are represented below, was whether there is something that organization scholars can learn from the playwrights and from Henrik Ibsen in particular in this respect. These three essays include interpretations that the panellists make of Ibsen’s work, and reflections about implications for organization studies.