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  • By Greg Sellei
    Aug 6, 2013
    Given our society's trend towards ever-greater imbalances and abuses of power, we could all benefit from thinking more clearly about the nature of power. But power is one of those topics that is so huge – so ever-present in both the foreground and background of our lives, operating at so many levels and in so many ways – that it is hard to know where to even begin thinking about it. Turns out, Cecile Green’s book is a great place. She describes power in terms of two axes – autonomous/collective and implicit/explicit; furthermore, she adds the concepts of ethics (fascinatingly defined as the inclusion of all relevant perspectives) and health (also intriguingly defined as a balance of challenge and support). This approach immediately opens up this seemingly intractable topic. It is plain to see how this framework could help anyone to perceive and articulate the role/use of power in just about any context. I won’t pretend I can do justice to her carefully laid out theory here; so the... More > main point I would make in this review is that Green is not content with merely a general explication of power, but aims much higher: at defining what she calls generative power. The relevant question here is, “How can we analyze our use of power in any context to determine that we are using it beneficially?” I have no doubt that Green provides some very useful tools to at least begin answering this. Green indicates that she is connected with Ken Wilbur’s Integral community and it is apparent that she writes with them in mind. They seem to have a particular language/way of looking at things, and she makes use of that vocabulary/perspective at times. I have some familiarity with it, so I could follow along well enough – and since most Integral terms are explained adequately, I suspect even people unfamiliar with Integral theory would be able to as well. But in any case, this is not “easy” or “light” reading – nor should it be. If you want a serious, original, and broad discussion of power that provides a very open, adaptable framework for understanding the nature of power (and which also offers a seemingly very carefully worked-out system for applying these ideas in formal organizational settings, like a business – which I must leave to others, with more practical experience in those areas, to comment on), this book will truly reward the effort you put into it.< Less
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Product Details

First Edition
Round Sky Solutions
July 1, 2013
Perfect-bound Paperback
Interior Ink
Full color
1.52 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
8.5 wide x 11 tall
Product ID
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