Weber's Traditional Authority and Charismatic Authority

Topics: Authority, Charismatic authority, Max Weber Pages: 2 (472 words) Published: March 11, 2014

TUTOR: Jabulile Mpanza

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Tutorial 2
Nolwazi Dlamini
Traditional Authority is based on customs and tradition and the long established way of doing things. (Heywood, 2007:220). This authority tends to be irrational and inconsistent and perpetuates the status quo. Traditional authority does not change or evolve. Traditional authority helps to shape the political culture by keeping values such as receptivity, respect and duty. An example of this type of authority would be a patriarchal structure where “the servants are completely and personally dependent upon the lord.” (Weber, 1958:4). Weber’s second type of authority is known as Charismatic Authority which is based upon the perceived extraordinary characteristics of an individual that is on his or her charisma. The personal magnetism of the leader characterizes the relationship between the leader and his followers. (Heywood, 2007:220). It is not based on customs and it often has no limits. Traditional authority focused on the special quality conferring extraordinary powers of leadership and the ability to inspire veneration and it came in the form of the individual or the office. (Heywood, 2007:221) The third type of political legitimacy is legal- rational authority which is based on the formalized belief in the content of the law or natural...

Bibliography: 1. Goodwin, B. 1987. Using Political Ideas. 2nd ed. Chichester: Wiley
2. Heywood, A.2007. Political Culture, Identity and Legitimacy, Politics. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan:220-221
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