Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the connections between autopoiesis, as described by Maturana and Varela, and Bakhtin's work on dialogue in understanding successful organizational rhetoric. Design/methodology/approach: This paper reviews two foundational texts in order to see the connection between them. Findings: The concept of "organizational closure" will govern the domain of communication and therefore also any act in rhetoric. Originality/value: This is a first attempt to link "organizational closure" as it exists in autopoiesis to Bakhtin's notion of a superaddressee.