Psychopathology and Politics; Politics: Who Gets What, When, How; Democratic Character

By Harold D. Lasswell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VII
CLASS

Political analysis includes the class consequences of events. A class is a major social group of similar function, status, and outlook.

A revolution is a shift in the class composition of elites. The influence of the Southern landed aristocracy on American politics was curtailed as a result of the Civil War. On the world stage there was no significant novelty about substituting commercial and industrial capitalists for landed proprietors. This change had occurred under circumstances of catastrophic violence in France at the end of the eighteenth century. In world perspective, the American Civil War did not, but the French Revolution did, signify that a new social formation had risen to greatest influence. The French Revolution, therefore, may be called a world revolution. After the revolution in France the next world revolution took place in Russia in 1917.

World revolutions have been accompanied by sudden shifts in the ruling vocabulary of the elite. Said the absolutist James I of Great Britain, in the days before the gentry revolution:

"It is atheism and blasphemy to dispute what God can do...so it is presumption and high contempt in a subject to dispute what a king can do, or to say that a king cannot do this or that."

In the same strain are the words of Bishop Bossuet, commissioned by Louis XIV with the education of the Dauphin, before the bourgeois revolution:

"As in God are united all perfection and every virtue,

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Psychopathology and Politics; Politics: Who Gets What, When, How; Democratic Character
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Publisher's Foreword iii
  • Contents vii
  • Title Page ix
  • Preface xi
  • Contents xiv
  • Chapter I - Life-Histories and Political Science 1
  • Chapter II - The Psychopathological Approach 15
  • Chapter III - A New Technique of Thinking 28
  • Chapter IV - The Criteria of Political Types 38
  • Chapter V - Theories of Personality Development 65
  • Chapter VI - Political Agitators 78
  • Chapter VII - Political Agitators -- Continued 106
  • Chapter VIII - Political Administrators 127
  • Chapter IX - Political Convictions 153
  • Chapter X - The Politics of Prevention 173
  • Chapter XI - The Prolonged Interview and Its Objectification 204
  • Chapter XII - The Personality System and Its Substitutive Reactions 221
  • Chapter XIII - The State as a Manifold of Events 240
  • Appendix A - Select Bibliography 268
  • Appendix B - Question List on Political Practices 276
  • Title Page 287
  • Preface 289
  • Contents 293
  • Part I -- Elite 295
  • Part II -- Methods 311
  • Chapter III - Violence 326
  • Chapter IV - Goods 342
  • Chapter V - Practices 360
  • Part III -- Results 375
  • Chapter VII - Class 392
  • Chapter VIII - Personality 410
  • Chapter IX - Attitude 427
  • Chapter X - RÉsumÉ 443
  • Bibliographical Notes 455
  • Title Page 463
  • Democratic Character 465
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