“Power. Power is growing up, power is mutual support between those who feel different, power is understanding among those who do not comply with the norm, power is creating a network, raising your voice, using it as a speaker.”
The word power can have different connotations depending on the field of application.
According to Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries, the word power can refer to the ability to control people, things, countries, or areas, but it also refers to the ability, right or authority of an individual or a group to do something.
In sociology, power is considered a key concept, with several meanings and considerable disagreement around it. Max Weber defined it as “the ability of an individual or group to achieve their own goals or aims when others are trying to prevent them from realising them” (Weber, 1921). According to the famous sociologist, power is authoritative or coercive; it is something that is held, taken away, lost or stolen and it is essentially used in adversarial relationships between those with power and those without it.
Power is usually given a negative connotation as it is seen as something unjust, something granted to a person because of its position or title, but it could also be seen as a tool to influence others positively, to offer support, to empower and reach communities’ goals (Miller, 2018).
Miller R, (2018). Be Chief: It’s a Choice, Not a Title. Highlands Ranch: Authors Place Press.
Weber M, (1922). Economy and Society: An Outline of Interpretive Sociology. Berkeley: University of California Press.