China in Transition: Communism, Capitalism, and Democracy

By Ronald M. Glassman | Go to book overview

Chapter 11
Legitimate Authority and Communist Systems of Government

THE CONCEPT OF LEGITIMACY

The distinction between naked power and legitimate authority becomes an important one for political analysis. Power, which Max Weber defines as "the probability that one actor within a social relationship will be in a position to carry out his own will despite resistance,"1 is commonly regarded as authority when accorded legitimacy. Yet legitimated power, or authority, is a problematic concept in Weber's writings. Weber actually employed the term Herrschaft, but it is a term that suffers from ambiguity in translation. Talcott Parsons has translated Herrschaft as "imperative control."2 Reinhard Bendix3 and Gunter Roth, 4 however, prefer the term "domination." The term "legitimate domination" best describes Weber's usage. But, one can ask, is "domination" ever legitimate? And how does the exertion of power over people by political leaders gain legitimacy in their eyes? Do leaders dominate people by legitimating their power and gaining "authority." How do people formulate their "subject beliefs" such that they come to accept domination as legitimate, and can they reject such domination as illegitimate? Let us look more closely at the problem of power and domination on the one hand, and authority and consent on the other.

If it is true that human groups, as opposed to animal groups, can become consciously aware of the leader-led process and can question the right to power of any given leader, and if any human group can withdraw its "consent" from any leader, that leader would then find it difficult, almost impossible, to continue in a leadership role. On the other hand, while any human group can remove and replace any leader from whom they have withdrawn consent, it is also true that the process of consent-giving can be manipulated by the leader, who is, after all, in social-psychological interaction with the group and not isolated from the consent-giving process.

-233-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
China in Transition: Communism, Capitalism, and Democracy
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 296

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.