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Political Legitimacy and the State - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Political Legitimacy and the State

Rodney Barker


All governments and their supporters attempt to justify their power by the arguments and rituals of legitimacy. The claim to ultimate power authorized by principles of right, morality, or destiny is what distinguishes the state from other organizations and institutions. The study of legitimate power thus lies at the heart of political science. This book examines the accounts that have been given of legitimacy within the principal traditions of political analysis. Drawing on recent historical examples, the book argues for a more diversified understanding of the function and the character of pol ... More

Keywords: political legitimacy, political science, political analysis, state power, government

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 1990 Print ISBN-13: 9780198274957
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198274957.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Rodney Barker, author
London School of Economics