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Charisma, Social Structure and Social Change*

  • T. K. Oommen (a1)

Notwithstanding the wide currency of the concept of charisma in contemporary social science, considerable confusion exists in regard to its employment. While some authors insist that the concept should be used in the Weberian sense, others advocate its emancipation from the ecclesiastical context in order to render it suitable for use in the modern secular context. I will argue that “charisma” is ultimately a product of social structure and hence its nature and content will undergo a transformation as the society itself changes.

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C. J. Friedrich , “Leadership and the Problem of the Charismatic Power”, Journal of Politics, Vol. 23, No. 1 (1961), pp. 324

Edward Shils , “Charisma, Order and Status”, American Sociological Review, Vol. 30, No. 2 (1965), pp. 199213.

W. H. Friedland , “For a Sociological Concept of Charisma”, Social Forces, Vol. 43, No. 1 (1964), p. 22.

Egon Bittner , “Radicalism and the Organization of Radical Movements”, American Sociological Review, Vol. 28, No. 6 (1963), pp. 936937.

M. L. Dantwala , “Prospects and Problems of Land Reforms in India”, Economic Development and Cultural Change, Vol. 6, No. 1 (1957), pp. 311.

G. Mc T. Kahin , Guy J. Pauker and Lucion W. Pye , “Comparative Politics in non-Western countries”, The American Political Science Review, Vol. 49 (1955), pp. 10221041.

K. J. Ratnam , “Charisma and Political Leadership”, Political Studies, Vol. 12, No. 3 (1964), pp. 341354.

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Comparative Studies in Society and History
  • ISSN: 0010-4175
  • EISSN: 1475-2999
  • URL: /core/journals/comparative-studies-in-society-and-history
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