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I was lucky to be counted among them. I read it in a few days and nights. It was a truly transformative experience, as devastatingly illuminating as having read Arthur Koestler's Darkness at Noon, George Orwell's or Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago. As a matter of fact, I had first heard of Robert Conquest's path-breaking analyses of Stalinism from Radio Free Europe, during the unforgettable broadcasts by democratic intellectuals Monica Lovinescu and Virgil Ierunca. It was however an extraordinary, utterly disturbing, and unforgettable moment to read that encyclopedia of communist destructiveness that Conquest managed to compose in spite of archives being inaccessible, witnesses hard to interview, and all the other obstacles created by the re-Stalinization of the Soviet Union after Khrushchev's fall in It was a genuine historical monument, superbly documented, an example of the best scholarship inspired by genuine empathy for the victims.

I was wrong: Conquest's book made me understand the intrinsic criminality of the regime, its irresistible nihilistic logic, the diabolical drive to continuously homogenize society and eliminate whatever smacked of otherness, all the "objective" and "subjective" "enemies of the people. No wonder that the revisionist school targeted some of these authors especially Conquest, Malia, and Pipes as the main proponents of a liberal anticommunist, allegedly Cold War-driven intellectual paradigm. It was quite normal for the self-styled anti-anticommunists of the Brezhnev era to dislike those who saw the system as essentially criminal and questioned the applicability of concepts such as social Paul Hollander, ed.

Political Violence: Belief, Behavior, and Legitimation. Author: Vladimir Tismaneanu. Social class analysis emphasizes the political power of capitalist elites. It can be split into two parts. The power structure approach focuses on determining who rules, while the structuralist approach emphasizes the way a capitalist economy operates, allowing and encouraging the state to do some things but not others. Contemporary political sociology is concerned with the play of power and politics across societies, which includes, but is not restricted to relations between the state and society.

In part, this is a product of the growing complexity of social relations, the impact of social movement organizing, and the relative weakening of the state via globalization. Political sociology is as much focused on micro questions the formation of identity through social interaction; the politics of knowledge , as it is on macro questions how to capture and use state power.

Power is frequently defined as the ability to influence the behavior of others with or without resistance. Power is frequently defined by political scientists as the ability to influence the behavior of others with or without resistance. The term authority is often used for power perceived as legitimate by the social structure. Power can be seen as evil or unjust, but the exercise of power is accepted as endemic to humans as social beings.

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The use of power need not involve coercion, force or the threat of force. The sociological examination of power involves discovering and describing the relative strengths: equal or unequal; stable or subject to periodic change. Sociologists usually analyze relationships in which parties have relatively equal or nearly equal power in terms of constraint rather than of power.

Thus power has a connotation of unilateralism. If this were not so, then all relationships could be described in terms of power, and its meaning would be lost. Power may derive from a number of sources, including social class material wealth can equal power , resource currency material items such as money, property, food , personal or group charisma, ascribed power acting on perceived or assumed abilities, whether these bear testing or not , social influence of tradition compare ascribed power , etc. People use more than rewards, threats and information to influence others.

In everyday situations, people use a variety of power tactics to push or prompt others into particular action. There are many examples of power tactics that are quite common and employed everyday. Some of these tactics include bullying, collaboration, complaining, criticizing, demanding, disengaging, evading, humor, inspiring, manipulating, negotiating, socializing and supplicating. Recent experimental psychology suggests that the more power one has the less one takes on the perspective of others, implying that the powerful have less empathy.

Powerful people are also more likely to take action. In one example, more powerful people turned off an irritatingly close fan twice as much as less powerful people. A rally of the trade union UNISON in Oxford during a strike : Labor unions attempt to bring more balance into the relationship between employers and employees by forming large coalitions of employees who, by working together, can exert power of their own.

Give examples of the three types of authority as defined by Max Weber and what distinguishes all of them from coercion or force. Authority is the legitimate or socially approved use of power that a person or a group holds over another. Legitimacy is vital to the notion of authority; legitimacy is the main means by which authority is distinguished from more general notions of power. Power can be exerted by the use of force or violence.

Authority, by contrast, depends on subordinate groups consenting to the use of power wielded by superior groups.

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These have sometimes been translated to English as types of authority, because domination is not seen as a political concept. Weber defined domination authority as the chance of commands being obeyed by a specifiable group of people. Legitimate authority is that which is recognized as legitimate and justified by both the ruler and the ruled. The first type discussed by Weber is rational-legal authority. It is a form of authority with legitimacy that depends on formal rules and established laws of the state, which are usually written down and are often very complex.

The second type of authority is traditional authority, which derives from long-established customs, habits, and social structures. When power passes from one generation to another, it is known as traditional authority. The third form of authority is charismatic authority. Here, the charisma of the individual or the leader plays an important role.

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Weber states that legitimacy distinguishes authority from coercion, force, power, leadership, persuasion, and influence. Superiors, he states, feel that they have a right to issue commands; subordinates perceive an obligation to obey. The degree to which these rights and obligations are felt is based on the perceived legitimacy of the authority. A well-established, respected, democratically elected government typically wields more authority than an ad hoc, temporary, or corrupt government.

Max Weber, in Politics as a Vocation , conceived of the state as a monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force. This definition of the state has figured prominently in philosophy of law and in political philosophy throughout the twentieth century. Ownership of territory is another characteristic that Weber deemed prerequisite for a state. Such a monopoly, according to Weber, must occur via a process of legitimation.

Political Violence: Belief, Behavior, and Legitimation

The right of self-defense is a private form of legitimate violence that is recognized by the state. A Helicopter Operated by Blackwater Worldwide : Blackwater Worldwide is private military company that contracts with the United States to provide military services. States may maintain a monopoly on legitimate violence but outsource its execution by contracting with private parties such as Blackwater.

A police officer : States maintain a monopoly on violence, exercised by police officers. Traditional authority refers to a form of leadership in which authority derives from tradition or custom. Traditional authority is a type of leadership in which the authority of a ruling regime is largely tied to tradition or custom. In addition to traditional authority, Weber claimed that the other two styles of authority were charismatic authority and rational-legal authority. Weber noted that, in history, these ideal types of domination always seemed to occur in combinations.

Weber traced traditional domination back to patriarchs, their households, and the ancient tradition of the family. In such systems, the master, almost exclusively an older father, is designated in accordance with the rules of inheritance. He has no administrative staff, nor any machinery to enforce his will by force alone.

Instead, he depends on the willingness of subservient group members to respect his authority. They obey him based on the belief that this is their duty, sanctioned by tradition. Patrimonial government is related to this model, but is slightly different. In this style of leadership, all officials are personal dependents or favorites of the ruler, and are appointed by the ruler. Their interactions with the ruler are based on paternal authority and filial dependence.

Military force is an important instrument of patrimonial rule. Patrimonial dominance has often prevailed in the Orient. In comparison to patrimonalism, feudalism has one major similarity and several important differences. The similarity is that both are based on tradition and have powerful rulers who grant rights in return for military and administrative services.

There are two important differences. First, feudalism replaced the paternal relationship of patrimonalism with a contract of allegiance based on knightly militarism. Second, in a patrimonial government, officials are personally dependent on the patriarch. In feudalism, these individuals are replaced with vassals, who have contractual freedom, personal allegiance, and socioeconomic prominence. Rational-legal authority is a form of leadership in which authority is largely tied to legal rationality, legal legitimacy, and bureaucracy.

Max Weber : Max Weber and Wilhelm Dilthey introduced verstehen—understanding behaviors—as goal of sociology. Rational-legal authority is a form of leadership in which the authority of an organization or a ruling regime is largely tied to legal rationality, legal legitimacy, and bureaucracy. The majority of the modern states of the twentieth century are rational-legal authorities, according to those who use this form of classification.

Unlike charismatic authority and traditional authority, rational-legal authority derives its powers from the system of bureaucracy and legality. Weber defined legal order as a system wherein the rules are enacted and obeyed as legitimate because they are in line with other laws on how they can be enacted and how they should be obeyed. These rules are enforced by a government that monopolizes their enactment, while holding the legitimate use of physical force.

Weber wrote that the modern state based on rational-legal authority emerged from the patrimonial and feudal struggle for power uniquely in Western civilization.

The prerequisites for the modern Western state are the monopoly by a central authority of the means of administration and control; the monopoly of legislative authority; and the organization of officialdom, dependent upon the central authority. According to Max Weber, a modern state exists where a political community has three elements.

First, an administrative and legal order that has been created and can be changed by legislation that also determines its role. Second, it must have binding authority over citizens and actions in its jurisdiction. Lastly, it must possess the right to legitimately use the physical force in its jurisdiction.