Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Power: Political power is the ability to influence or control the behavior of others in the political sphere. It can be exercised through formal institutions, such as the government, or through informal means, such as persuasion or coercion. See also Coercion, Persuasion, Government, Governance, Society, Politics, Democracy, Ideology.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Kenneth N. Waltz on Power - Dictionary of Arguments

Brocker I 632
Power/WaltzVsDahl/Waltz: Waltz does not follow the common power definition of Dahl (1957) (1):
Def Power/Dahl: the possibility of an actor is to get other actors to take actions that they would otherwise not have taken.
WaltzVsDahl: this definition is useless for the analysis of political processes, since politics is above all the area of unintended and unexpected consequences. (2)
Def Power/Waltz: Power is that states influence other states' policies more than their own. (3) This influence does not have to be active at all. However, the result will always remain uncertain, as the result of government action is influenced by the environment in which it takes place. This also leads Waltz to believe that it is not necessary for his theory to assume that the state is a rationally acting actor. (4)
, >International Politics.

1. Robert Dahl, “The Concept of Power”, in: Behavioral Science 2. 1957, p. 201-215.
2. Kenneth N. Waltz, America’s European Policy: Viewed in Global Perspective“; in. Wolfram Hanrieder (Hg.) The United States and Western Europe, Cambridge Mass. 1974, p. 13.
3. Kenneth N. Waltz Theory of International Politics, Reading, Mas. 1979, p. 192.
4. Ibid. p. 76-77

Carlo Masala, „Kenneth N. Waltz, Theory of International Politics” in: Manfred Brocker (Hg.) Geschichte des politischen Denkens. Das 20. Jahrhundert. Frankfurt/M. 2018

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

PolWaltz I
Kenneth N. Waltz
Man,the State and War New York 1959

Brocker I
Manfred Brocker
Geschichte des politischen Denkens. Das 20. Jahrhundert Frankfurt/M. 2018

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