Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Chapter 13 Politics and Economics: Penetrating Power and Privilege © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Chapter 13 Politics and Economics: Penetrating Power and Privilege © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 13 Politics and Economics: Penetrating Power and Privilege © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011.

2 Politics and Economics Both political and economic systems enforce the distribution of power in society Political systems involve power relationships between individuals and larger social institutions Economic systems produce goods and services and distribute them unequally, giving some citizens more privileges than others

3 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. The most common social science definition of power comes from Max Weber: Power is the ability of people or groups to realize their own will in group action, even against resistance of others who disagree. What is Power?

4 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Three arenas of power The nation-state attempts to control individual behavior through Physical control and coercion Symbolic control and manipulation Rules of conduct Power is the ability to influence interactions and organization Marxist perspective: power includes control of economic resources and production, which allows the dominant class to maintain rule What is power?

5 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro-level: Power is operative in social interaction Meso-level: Power also operates in City, county, state, and national decisions about resources and regulations Large bureaucratic organizations, corporations, ethnic or minority groups Macro-level: global systems of power include international organizations such as the United Nations Multiple Levels of Power and Privilege

6 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro- and meso-level perspectives: The legitimacy of power Interaction theorists: focus on how symbols and constructions of reality allow some people to assume power, and how they generate loyalty Micro-level socialization instills belief in the legitimacy of reigning authorities Theories of Power and Privilege

7 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro- and meso-level perspectives: The legitimacy of power Max Weber’s contribution: Weber distinguished between legitimate and illegitimate power Authority, or legitimate power, is recognized as rightful by those who are subject to it The legitimacy of a government’s power is measured by: Whether the state can govern without the use or threat of forceful coercion, and Whether challenges to state authority are processed through normal channels Theories of Power and Privilege

8 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro- and meso-level perspectives: The legitimacy of power Weber’s contribution, cont. Three ways leaders gain legitimate power: Traditional authority Charismatic authority Rational-legal authority – most common today All three are legitimate forms of power because the people being governed give their consent Theories of Power and Privilege

9 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level perspectives: Functionalism and pluralist theory Functionalists believe that citizens legitimize political systems because they serve important functions in society Pluralist theory: Power is distributed among various interest groups so that no one group rules Politics involves negotiation and compromise Having multiple power centers offers the best chance to maintain democratic forms of government Theories of Power and Privilege

10 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level perspectives: Conflict theory and the power elite Conflict theorists believe that the state protects the privileged position of the few Power elite theory: Rule of society by a small group of elites is inevitable Michels’ “iron law of oligarchy”: leaders’ influence over who succeeds them allows ongoing elite power and abuse of power C. Wright Mills described the U.S. power elite as cohesive and interlocking, enabling it to make key political, economic, and social decisions Theories of Power and Privilege

11 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro-level analysis Political systems influence our personal lives in a variety of ways Individuals also impact government through political participation, such as voting Individual political participation is affected by: Where people fall in the stratification system Their perceptions of their power in relation to the state Individuals, Power, and Participation

12 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro-level analysis: Participation in democratic processes Ideology and political attitudes affect how people think about power and participation What do we believe about … The power of individuals vs. state power? Equal distribution of resources versus allowing those with high ability or inherited status to receive more wealth? Whether change is desirable? Individuals, Power, and Participation

13 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Micro-level analysis: Participation in democratic processes Levels of participation in politics: The majority of people in the world are uninvolved in the political process Lack of opportunity in non-democratic countries In democratic countries, apathy and alienation Participation can include voting, contact with government representatives, involvement in local and national campaigns and issues U.S. voter turnout is second lowest of the Western democracies Individuals, Power, and Participation

14 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso-level analysis Meso-level political institutions: state or provincial governments, national political parties, large formal organizations Meso-level political institutions influence and are influenced by other institutions such as the family, education, religion, health care, and the economy Power and Privilege Within Nations

15 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso-level analysis Purposes of political & economic institutions Six functions of meso-level political and economic institutions: To maintain social control To serve as an arbiter in disputes To protect members of the group To represent the group in relations with other groups To plan for the future of the group To provide for the needs of members Power and Privilege Within Nations

16 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and Macro-Level Systems of Power and Privilege Political institutions: determine and exercise power relations in society Economic institutions: deal with production and distribution of goods and services Political and economic institutions are interrelated Both sets of institutions affect power relations Power and Privilege Within Nations

17 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of political systems Authoritarian systems: regimes headed by dictators or military juntas who hold absolute power, with little room for citizen involvement Totalitarian states: run by a single group or party based on a specific political ideology; the state controls many aspects of life such as work and the media; dissent is discouraged or eliminated State terrorism: terror used by a state to control its own citizens or those of another nation Power and Privilege Within Nations

18 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of political systems Democratic systems: at least two political parties compete for power in elections; government is accountable to citizens, who have significant control over their own lives. Other features: Citizens participate in selecting the government Civil liberties are guaranteed Constitutional limits are placed on government power Written documents such as constitutions are the basis for the development of legal systems Power and Privilege Within Nations

19 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of political systems Democratic systems, cont. Forms of democratic government: Parliamentary (e.g., Great Britain) Presidential (e.g., the U.S.) Types of representation Proportional (e.g., many European countries) Winner-take-all (e.g., the U.S.) Power and Privilege Within Nations

20 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of political systems Democratic systems, cont. New technology delivers political information at high speed, but also has downsides: Lack of careful deliberation Reduces complex issues to binary opposites Isolation of individual citizens Sensationalism rather than reasoned deliberation Impulsive rhetoric Consumer mentality rather than citizen mentality Confounds information with wisdom Power and Privilege Within Nations

21 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of economic systems Market systems (capitalism) Stress individual planning, private property, profit- making through free competition Supply and demand let some profit, others fail Ideally, little governmental oversight is needed: Markets ensure sufficient production, distribution, quality Markets reward innovation, resulting in growth & prosperity Marxist critics claim capitalism creates class inequality, exploitation, conflict, and revolution Historically, in most Western capitalist countries, labor unions and laws have emerged instead of revolutions Other critics: profit trumps human dignity and values Power and Privilege Within Nations

22 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of economic systems Planned systems (communism, socialism) State-based planning and control of property Production is planned with communal good in mind Ideally, each individual contributes to and receives benefits from the system Tedious jobs are shared, so individuals have time to focus on humanistic and culturally important aspects of life Critiques: No system has eliminated all private property and privilege Placing both economic and political power in government hands gives too much control to the few Power and Privilege Within Nations

23 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Meso- and macro-level analysis: Dominant types of economic systems Mixed economies (democratic socialism or welfare states) Collective or group planning of societal development Individuals can pursue self-interest within limits Industry is privately owned but regulated; public services are government controlled Democratic political system, public accountability Taxation used to redistribute income and pay for education, health, pensions, etc. Problems: a relatively new form, can be both productive and cumbersome Power and Privilege Within Nations

24 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Power and the nation-state Nation-state: a political, geographical, and cultural unit with recognizable boundaries and a system of government The nation-state and nationalism are relatively recent; they emerged in the 16 th century Today the entire world is divided among over 200 nation-states National & Global Systems of Governance

25 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Revolutions and rebellions Revolution: social and political transformation of a nation Occurs when nation fails to fulfill expected responsibilities and new leadership emerges to challenge existing regime Often violent Usually results in altered distributions of power National & Global Systems of Governance

26 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. The meso-macro political connection State/provincial governments and national political parties: less encompassing than the federal government but still influence national political processes State-level controversies that influence national politics: Same-sex marriage Funding for the economic stimulus plan Procedures for nominating and electing the president National & Global Systems of Governance

27 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Global interdependencies and politics Dependency and world systems theorists point out inequality between rich core countries and developing peripheral countries Growth of democracy in peripheral countries: Occurring in some areas Can be aided, but not imposed, by foreign powers Some preconditions may be: economic well-being, lack of extreme inequality, pluralism, strong middle class, market economy, tolerant culture, literacy, influence of world system of democratic states National & Global Systems of Governance

28 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level War: armed conflict occurring within, between, or among societies or groups Sometimes called “organized mass violence” A frequent but not inevitable condition of human existence National & Global Systems of Governance

29 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level Why do nations go to war? Leaders use moral, religious, or political ideology to legitimize war, though causes may lie elsewhere Functional theorists believe underlying social problems cause system disruptions, including war Some also see war as functional for social integration Conflict theorists see war as the outcome of oppression by the ruling elite and/or attempts to overthrow that oppression E.g., businesses profit from war National & Global Systems of Governance

30 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level How can nations avoid war? Deterrence: some argue that if a nation is militarily strong, no one will dare attack it Statistical evidence shows that deterrence does not reduce the chance of war Extremely expensive Has created a “military-industrial complex” Negotiation: use of discussion to reach agreement The problem is that negotiation means a partial win – and a partial loss – for each side National & Global Systems of Governance

31 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level Conclusions from research on 20 th century war: No nation that began a major war in the 20 th century emerged as a clear winner War between nuclear powers could be suicidal A victor’s peace plan is seldom lasting; equitably negotiated peace settlements are more durable National & Global Systems of Governance

32 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level Terrorism Terrorism: the use of indiscriminate violence to cause mass fear and panic, intimidate citizens, and advance a group’s political goals Usually refers to acts of violence by private, non- state groups with revolutionary political goals State terrorism: government use of terror to control people Terrorists come from all political orientations: anarchists, nationalists, religious fundamentalists, members of ethnic groups Effective because terrorist strikes seem random, so governments have no clear way to respond National & Global Systems of Governance

33 © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011. Macro-level analysis: Violence on the global level Terrorism: without understanding the underlying causes, we can do little to prevent it Cultural explanations cite religious and political beliefs that encourage “we vs. they” thinking Structural explanations help us understand when conditions are right for terrorism, e.g. when conflict between societal systems is already high Conflict theory explanations emphasize the unequal distribution of world resources and the oppression of particular groups National & Global Systems of Governance


Download ppt "Chapter 13 Politics and Economics: Penetrating Power and Privilege © Pine Forge Press, an Imprint of SAGE Publications, Inc., 2011."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google