Pipers Woerterbuch zur Politik

Authors: Nohlen
Summary: In about 240 words, the entry reviews Max Weber s central ideas on the term and lists some historical examples of charismatic leaders. Weber developed a typology of leadership that sets the charismatic one apart from rational and traditional leadership. Charismatic leaders, such as Napoleon but also Christ and Hitler, are followed because of their unusual, super-human or super-natural like characters. The entry argues that to have fully devoted followers, who worship their leader like a prophet, allows charismatic leaders to initiate dynamic societal developments by overcoming bureaucratic rigidities.