chapter
6 Pages

Introductory Remarks

WithZlatko Isakovic

Thomas Hobbes considered state power an instrument of the instinct for self-survival, which in a war between everyone achieves its natural function in mutual war; a similar interpretation was expressed by the French theoretician Duverger in one of his works. Historical empirical material often seems to confirm the belief in a strong correlation between power and government, but the presumption that this correlation is historically confined and might be overcome under different historical circumstances may not regarded or qualified merely as a transcendental ideal. Since coercion can be extracted from all elements of social power, the term 'force' is considered broader than the term 'physical force' or 'coercion'. In societies with rich and long warrior traditions, military power, i.e. force, ranks higher in social hierarchy of power forms than in communities focusing on other, particularly civic and peacetime, activities. The existence of power implies the existence of a relationship of inequality between individuals and other elements of the observed structure.