2003 - Volume 44 > Numéro 2

ISSN 0035-2969

Power in Coleman’s work
Steven LUKES

pp. 375-388


Coleman’s analysis of power fits into his overall project of uncovering the micro-foundations of macro-social phenomena : it aims both to explain and evaluate the extent to which distinctively modern organizational authority systems have usurped the power of natural persons, and also to propose remedies that would restore power to the latter. Coleman’s vision of an overall transformation from a natural and primordial to a purposively constructed social environment is criticized for relying upon folk sociologies. A discussion follows of his analyses of the ways in which modern corporate actors allegedly usurp the power of individuals ; of the ways in which the distinction between subjective and objective interests helps us understand corporate power ; of the links between corporate power and responsibility and ways in which corporate actors can be made more responsible for the power they have ; and of the extent to which the operations of power may be hidden from both observers and actors.



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