HARD TIMES: LEADERSHIP IN AMERICA – HISTORY

My most recent book – Hard Times: Leadership in America – was published in October by Stanford University Press. The book explores the impact of context on leadership and followership.

Beginning February 3, I started posting, in the order in which they appear, excerpts.

Excerpt from Chapter 1 – History 

“So far as leadership and followership are concerned, the United States of America is singular. First, because of its revolutionary inception it has always been characterized by a political culture that is anti-authority, that ensures and even encourages conflict between, and also among, leaders and led. Second, because of its revolutionary inception it has always been characterized by a political culture that makes it difficult for anyone at any level to lead – up to and including the chief executive. Third, because of its revolutionary inception it has always been characterized by a national character that is independent and idiosyncratic, by men and women who as soon follow their own path as anyone else’s. Fourth, because of its revolutionary inception it has always been characterized by an ideology that, however, idealized, advantages the have-nots at the expense of the haves. And, finally, because of its revolutionary inception it has always been characterized by a set of documents – by laws, if you will – that codify, sanctify, the fulfillments of followers as well as of leaders.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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