This illuminating title applies rational choice theory to the power debate, demonstrating the fallacious arguments of all sides. Power is analysed as a bargaining game where the power of actors is assessed in terms of the resources to which they have access. By distinguishing luck from power it shows that many groups widely regarded as powerful are merely lucky, albeit as a result of systematic features of society.
This is one of the first conceptual books on power directly to engage both classical and modern empirical debates on the power structure at both the local and national level.
Contents: 1. Introduction 2. Rational Choice and a Theory of Action 3. Preferences and Objective Interests 4. Political Power and Bargaining Theory 5. Collective Action and Dimensions of Power 6. State Power Structures 7. Preference Formation, Social Location and Ideology 8. Conclusions