Chapter 19
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Chapter 19. Power, Politics, And Authority. Chapter Outline. Defining the State Power and Authority Theories of Power Government: Power and Politics in a Diverse Society The Military. The Institutions of the State.

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Chapter 19

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Chapter 19

Chapter 19

Power, Politics, And Authority


Chapter outline

Chapter Outline

  • Defining the State

  • Power and Authority

  • Theories of Power

  • Government: Power and Politics in a Diverse Society

  • The Military


The institutions of the state

The Institutions of the State

Institutions comprise the state as the organized system of power and authority in society:

  • Government

  • Legal system

  • Police

  • Military 


Types of authority

Types of Authority

Weber postulated that there were three types of authority in society:

  • Traditional

  • Charismatic

  • Rational-legal 


Theories of power in society pluralism

Theories of Power in Society: Pluralism


Theories of power in society power elite

Theories of Power in Society: Power Elite


Theories of power in society autonomous state

Theories of Power in Society: Autonomous State


Theories of power in society feminist theory

Theories of Power in Society: Feminist Theory


Political participation

Political Participation

  • The U.S. has one of the lowest voter turnouts among democratic nations.

  • The higher a person’s social class, the higher the likelihood that she or he will vote.

  • When Black Americans are approached directly by party representatives, the likelihood that they will vote increases substantially.


Political participation1

Political Participation

  • Race, ethnicity, and gender influence political attitudes and behavior.

  • Women are more likely than men to identify and vote as Democrats and to have liberal views.

  • The gender gap is manifest in women’s views on peace keeping, gun control, and compassion issues.


Political power who s in charge

Political Power: Who’s in Charge?

  • Most of the members of Congress are White, well educated, men from upper-middle or upper-income backgrounds.

  • In the Senate of the 108th Congress (convening in 2003), there are 14 women, 0 African Americans or Latinos, 2 Asian Americans, 1 Native American.

  • Many members of Congress are millionaires, and have large financial interests in the industries they regulate.


The military

The Military

  • The function of the military is to defend the nation against external (and sometimes internal) threats.

  • Considered one of the most hierarchical social institutions.

  • There is a strong connection between the military and corporate America, through the military-industrial complex.


Race and the military

Race and the Military

  • Desegregation of the armed forces has promoted awareness among Black Americans of their right to equal opportunities.

  • Currently 34% of military personnel are racial Minorities – 20% African American, 8% Hispanic, and 6% other racial minorities.

  • African Americans and Latinos earn more in the Military, but don’t share the earnings premium of white veterans.


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