Politics > Determining Political Choice > Applications > Families > Power in Practice

Power Sources II: Power in Practice

Necessities of Family Life: CL4

The family has the same important work in tradition-bound societies as in emancipated dynamic societies. This work being:

This work is not straightforward given the many challenges and problems that life presents. Somehow, a family must make choices that enable the family to survive and thrive as a social unit. If it fails to do so, its members will run away or drift apart.

The five Centres of power in the family and their inter-relations.

Drivers of Family Life: CL3

As in society, anything and everything that a family does for itself (including proposing and making choices) is actually done by its individual members singly or in groups.

The dynamic duality appears here as two forms of power-drenched activity—Family-centric v Member-centric.


When members act and think in a family-centric way, they are usually responding to family responsibilities that are assigned and accepted explicitly or implicitly.

ClosedCL3F-Evolving Responsibilities


Whereas any member may reject or try to avoid family responsibility, each is identified with and driven by their emotions, and the wishes accompanying them.

ClosedCL3M-Emotional Wishes

Reviewing the Power Sources

All power sources ultimately reside within individuals. This is obvious in regard to wishes and responsibilities-CL3 and battles for control-CL1. But it also applies at the other two Levels.

Family choices-CL4 are powerful and abstract, but only exist as long as members sustain them. Family customs-CL2 may be a property of the wider group, but socialization makes them part of the identity structure controlling the mind of the individual.

Despite this, the power sources are not intrinsically sources of individual power — instead the sources use the individual as a powerful instrument within the family for their own ends.
cf. society…Closed where the powerful use the people as power to enable the elites to wage war and accumulate wealth for their own ends.

The notion that family members can and do exist independently of the family emerges at higher Levels, which are quite distinct from the sources of power.

Originally posted: July 2009; Last updated: 12 June 2014.

All posted material is part of a scientific project and should be regarded as provisional. Visitors are encouraged to think through the topics and propositions for themselves. Copyright © Warren Kinston 2009-2016.
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