Download Authority A Sociological History by Frank Furedi PDF

By Frank Furedi

Quandary with authority is as previous as human heritage itself. Eves sin used to be to problem the authority of God through disobeying his rule. Frank Furedi explores how authority was once contested in old Greece and given a strong that means in Imperial Rome. Debates approximately spiritual and secular authority ruled Europe during the heart a while and the Reformation. the fashionable international tried to increase new foundations for authority - democratic consent, public opinion, technological know-how - but Furedi exhibits that this challenge has remained unresolved, arguing that this present day the authority of authority is wondered. This old sociology of authority seeks to provide an explanation for how the modern difficulties of distrust and the lack of legitimacy of many associations are expert through the former makes an attempt to resolve the matter of authority. It argues that the foremost pioneers of the social sciences (Marx, Durkheim, Simmel, Tonnies and particularly Weber) seemed this question as one of many crucial demanding situations dealing with society.

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He takes the ‘epic poets’ to task for ignoring the ‘importance of the masses on the battlefield’, and refuses to accept the Homeric poems as a ‘safe guide to the political life of Greece in the poet’s own day’. Mahaffy writes as if he regards the ‘special spite and venom’ directed at Thersites as an insult to himself. He therefore attempts to correct the apparent distortions of the truth conveyed by Homer. 44 Many liberal and democratic critics appear to find it difficult to read the Iliad for what is was: one of the first recorded poems from ancient times.

Eksteins (1980) p. 353. Cited in Rose (1988) p. 7. Competing representations of authority 27 tendency to rediscover one’s ideological commitments in ancient times. 43 Mahaffy certainly stands up in defence of the downtrodden Thersites, and treats Homer as an ideological adversary. He takes the ‘epic poets’ to task for ignoring the ‘importance of the masses on the battlefield’, and refuses to accept the Homeric poems as a ‘safe guide to the political life of Greece in the poet’s own day’. Mahaffy writes as if he regards the ‘special spite and venom’ directed at Thersites as an insult to himself.

41 Political fluidity and instability was an integral part of Athenian culture. Whatever its downside, its openness to change encourages a relatively free attitude towards new ideas. Its critical spirit was personified through Socrates – but it is important to note that he himself and his ideas were products of a culture that he so often criticised. There is little doubt that Athens’s disposition to change encouraged a democratic ethos which in turn made it difficult to consolidate and institutionalise tradition and authority.

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