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BY :

BY MUHAMMAD HUSSAIN

Today’s Agenda:

Today’s Agenda DISCUSS WHAT IS POWER? DISCUSS WHO ARE THE POWERFUL? WHAT IS THE CONNECTION BETWEEN WEALTH AND POWER? DEFINE POWER AS WE WILL USE IT. DISCUSS DIFFERENT THEORIES OF POWER. DISCUSS DISTRIBUTION OF POWER IN THE UNITED STATES.

What is Power :

What is Power Weber’s definition The chance of men or a number of men to realize their desires in opposition to others who are participating in the action. Power for Weber is the basis of the stratification system.

Conditions for Power Blau :

Conditions for Power Blau Cannot reciprocate with anything no alternative supplier for desired resource no power to force other(s) to give up the resource can’t get along without the resource

Our focus:

Our focus The state is the major power that the average citizen must contend with. The power of the state and who controls it.

Who are the powerful?:

Who are the powerful? There is a connection between power and wealth Old Rich Family based wealth Unique lifestyle Sense of cohesion and the formation of community New Rich Self-made or recently acquired their wealth many through new industries (Hi-Tech Gurus) Usually come from upper class Engage in conspicuous consumption and leisure Surest path to wealth is to be born into the privileges and resources of existing wealth. Usually handed down from generation to generation No such reality to the myth of Horatio Alger Leaders are chosen overwhelmingly from socially dominant groups and have been for many generations

Elites versus Masses:

Elites versus Masses ELITES Groups whose members occupy the society's top positions of power. They exercise authority, influence, and control of resources within the society’s major organization. Control ideas Have influence through control of resources and authority positions and access to important networks. Masses Those who make-up the vast majority of the society’s populace. Those whose power is limited.

What is the relationship between the elites and the masses? To what extent can the masses influence the elites? :

What is the relationship between the elites and the masses? To what extent can the masses influence the elites? The Key Questions Then Are

Theories of Power:

Theories of Power Pluralist Power Elite Ruling Class Structuralist Class Theory

Pluralist Theory of Power:

Pluralist Theory of Power Society is composed of competing groups vying for power. No one group dominates all of the time. Balance is created by competition and coalitions

Pluralist Theory Major Elements:

Pluralist Theory Major Elements Power Is Shared Groups Are Autonomous and Narrow Issue Oriented No Permanent Power Structure One Single Groups Dominates Depends on the Issue Average Citizen Influences Public Decisions by Joining Groups Power Structure Is Balanced by Competition

Variations on Pluralist :

Variations on Pluralist Strategic Elites Server as coordinating element Managers of collective aims Who are they: Experts with knowledge Society wide influence Leaders from political, economic, military, cultural, and recreational fields

Dahl’s Variation on Pluralists:

Dahl’s Variation on Pluralists Corporate groups are more powerful than other groups Need to increase pressure from citizens groups to reestablish balance Does not acknowledge class related issues Defends existing structure

Power Elite Theory C. Wright Mills:

Power Elite Theory C. Wright Mills Power in modern society is centralized in power elite as a result of historical changes that made top three institutions so similar and powerful that coalesced their interest and might.

Power Elite Major Elements of Theory:

Power Elite Major Elements of Theory Comprised of top position holders in three institutions military, political, corporate power is result of position (not individual characteristics) Elite tend to come from same background and interact socially shared interests Higher immorality result of structure personality disintegration -> disintegration of middle class -> rise of Mass Society dominated and manipulated by media and education

Characteristics of a Mass Society:

Characteristics of a Mass Society Weakening of primary and local associations More impersonal bureaucracy Homogenizations of population and ideologies Longer chains of authority in organizations (more reporting layers) Personality disintegration

Ruling Class Theory Domhoff:

Ruling Class Theory Domhoff There exists a small group with more than their share of power. There are important connections between economic and political institutions.

Ruling Class Theory Major Elements:

Ruling Class Theory Major Elements Dominance of economic institutions Conflict driven --> resistance by working class Personal wealth is connected to economic and political power Upper class rules through a power elite Active members of the upper class Wealthy dominate political process through Special interest groups Policy formation groups Political candidate selection process Ideological hegemony

Structuralist Theory of Power:

Structuralist Theory of Power Structure of capitalism has developed in such a way that government must act to support capitalism in general. It is the structure of capitalism in which the government is embedded rather than individuals or positions that drives government policies to protect capitalists’ interest.

Reasons for connection :

Reasons for connection Increasing number if workers raises possibility of rise in workers’ class consciousness. Government must direct attention away from class issues to narrow economic issues prevent class unity Government takes on the task of regulating the labor force education restrictive welfare policies-> reserve labor pool

Reasons for connection:

Reasons for connection State need a certain amount of economic activity to survive. Needs money. Good economy Needs capitalists to invest in economy Develop policies and regulations that encourage capitalists’ investments State must ensure that smooth running of the economy for public support As long is economy is good people don’t care who runs things. Development of monopoly capitalism encourages intrusion by government State develops an interest in capital accumulation

Political Participation:

Political Participation Types of Political Participation Social Class Gender and Race Campaign Finance Lobbying and Interest Groups Politics and the Media

Types of Political Participation and Effectiveness (Marvin Olsen, 1982):

Types of Political Participation and Effectiveness (Marvin Olsen, 1982) Leaders (3% of population) Political candidates or government officials Activists (14%) Lobby and campaign contributors Communicators (13%) Informed knowledgeable individuals that communicate Citizens (30%) vote Marginals (18%) No sustained participation but can be mobilized on occasions Isolates (22%) Rarely participate or are informed

Who votes:

Who votes What is the relationship between age, race, class, and voting? What can you conclude from the data?

Women and Politics:

Women and Politics Party Identification The Media Connection

Money and Politics:

Money and Politics How Much Spent on Campaigns Most expensive Races The Big Picture

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