Understanding Legitimacy in Weber’s Perspectives and in Contemporary Society

Akinlabi, Oluwagbenga (2022) Understanding Legitimacy in Weber’s Perspectives and in Contemporary Society. In: Police-Citizen Relations in Nigeria. Palgrave's Critical Policing Studies . Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, Switzerland, pp. 11-24. ISBN 9783030929183, 9783030929190

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-92919-0_2


Modern thinking about legitimacy has been greatly influenced by Max Weber. According to Weber, people in authority often concoct ‘myths’ about their superiority or natural fitness to be in a position of power. These mythical justifications or claims are often necessary in order to claim moral justifications for their authority and sense of political propriety. These claims come in three broad forms: traditional, charismatic, and legal-rational dominations. They are often referred to as the ‘three inner justifications’ or the ‘basic legitimations of the power holder’. Succinctly put, traditional claims for legitimacy rest on grounds such as: ‘obey me because this is what our people have always done’; charismatic commands such as ‘obey me because I can transform your life’; and lastly, legal-rational orders like ‘obey me because I am your lawfully appointed superior’. These three basic legitimations of power holders and their relevance to modern society, especially their applicability to the African context, is discussed in this chapter.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: L900 Others in Social studies
M900 Other in Law
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Social Sciences
Depositing User: John Coen
Date Deposited: 18 May 2022 11:21
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2024 03:30
URI: https://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/49148

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