The forms of power

Analyse & Kritik 10 (3):3-31 (1988)
  Copy   BIBTEX


The question of how to define the concept of social power has been a focus of controversy among social theorists. In this paper, I put forward a definition of social power that avoids many of the pitfalls of previous attempts at such a definition. Roughly, I define the power which one agent has over another as the ability that the dominant agent has to control the situation within which the subservient agent acts. Using this basic definition of power, I go on to define many of the central forms in which power actually exists, forms that are conceptualized by such concepts as force, coercion, and influence. I show that these different forms of power can all be understood as specifications of the generic definition of power that I offered and go on to develop an account of how they function in relation to one another in actual relationship of social power



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 74,310

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

„The Forms of Power", Erscheint In.T. Wartenberg - 1987 - Analyse & Kritik 88 (4).
Democracy and the Persistence of Power.Preston King - 1998 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 1 (4):93-112.
Power and Social Ontology.Åsa Andersson - 2007 - Lund: Bokbox Publications.
Kierkegaard's Critique of the Bourgeois State.Robert L. Perkins - 1984 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 27 (1-4):207 – 218.
Rousseau y el concepto de soberanía popular.Georg Zenkert - 2000 - Areté. Revista de Filosofía 12 (2):81-109.


Added to PP

84 (#143,503)

6 months
5 (#143,633)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Thomas E. Wartenberg
Mount Holyoke College

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references