Political Parties and the Concept of Power, Danny Rye
Research on political organization is characterized by narrow, and usually behavioural or hierarchical, approaches to power. However, theoretical debates point to greater possibilities. We consider that power is concerned with agents; how these powers are constituted is as significant as the actions and behaviour of individuals. How are human goals formulated, articulated and obtained? We are also concerned with the positive capacities invested in individuals and collectives as much as the power some apparently possess over others.
A framework containing five ‘modes’ of power, accounting for its operation on different organizational levels, is proposed. These are: Individualistic, Strategic, Bureaucratic, Constitutive and Disciplinary. They should not be understood as parts of a holistic concept, but as a heuristic tool which supports and guides an analysis of power centred on the experience of party life.
Individualistic power generally explicates the conflicts between individuals and...