A Matter of Power

The competence required to utilise available resources in order to wield power is commendable. But to do so in a manner that is both well-meaning and appropriate with respect to the extent the power is used and the purposes for which it is used, relative to any given situation, is not so simple.

Furthermore, if there’s no mastery of the desire that becomes the impetus of creative thought and action – the mere control of structures and systems that form the foundations of power, will not be adequate provision, to give the controller enough satisfaction and reach satiation that could create some form of ‘reciprocal’ benefaction.

As a result, those who possess high effective power tend have their way in most instances, which results in asymmetry in power. Consequently, the powerless start vying for a rebalancing of the power dynamic.

However, such resistance triggers the high power groups to utilise all acquired power and available means to thwart the efforts and stifle any pressures brought on by those in defiance.

Thus, by controlling the instruments of force and the establishments that enforce laws and procedures regulating institutions of society, the powerful force the powerless to accept the imbalance through systematic indoctrination and socialisation.

And since the socially privileged typically assume that they have the right to control the interactions in relationships they have with those in the power-deficient classes, they employ interactive power as a tactic to justify oppression and the distorted relationship between them and their subordinates. For example, the behaviour of the oppressed, which may manifest as a result of the oppression they endure, is used to justify the oppression by the oppressors.

Over time, the experience of inferior/superior treatment produces a public image of being inferior/superior which is subsequently internalised as an image of self-inferiority/superiority. This then officially legitimises the unequal treatment.

So to meaningfully address this injustice, the oppressed need to understand that their oppressors need them, that is, their need to have power over them and their disdain over their independence only makes them dependent on having them as subordinates in order to define and realise their own power.

The oppressed therefore, should strive to understand that their oppressors need to be able to make demands, which are dictatorial and disobliging so that the obedience of the oppressed is the result of acquiescence to the oppressor’s will and not devotion devoid of deference.

Because only then will the oppressed effectively address their oppressors’ intolerance of their autonomy, since the very definition of the oppressors’ power is but a function of dependence on the vulnerabilities of the oppressed.



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