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Power and Authority, Resistance and Legitimacy
Power and authority, resistance and legitimacy
Two Traditions in the Analysis of Power

When one examines the two main traditions in the analysis of power in organization analysis they bear evident, and opposite, historical traces. First, in conventional organization theory (as argued in Hardy and Clegg, 1996) the emphasis has been very much on power as an aspect of informal and illegitimate organization, a tendency that achieves its strongest expression in Mintzberg (1983). In this tradition power employs illegitimate resources to coerce others into the attainment of illegitimate ends by the exercisers of power; in contrast, where there is legitimacy there is authority. The reasons for this treatment go back to Parsons's and Henderson's translation of Weber (1948), where Herrschaft (literally ...

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