Traditional Authority in Twenty-first Century Canada: Constitutional Monarchy in Post-modern Societies?

By Richard D. Christy.

Published by The International Journal of Civic, Political, and Community Studies

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: February 19, 2016 $US5.00

Max Weber argued that traditional authority, charismatic authority, and rational legal authority are types of legitimate authority. In a post-modern, scientific, technological society, rational legal authority dominates. In his article “The Malaise of Modernity,” Charles Taylor argues that one of the problems in society today is the primacy of instrumental reason or as Weber would argued rational-legal authority. As a result, Taylor states that nothing is sacred and everything in society is up for grabs. For Taylor every aspect of cultural and social structure can be subject to debate and criticism including political structures and the “head of state.” Canada is a constitutional monarchy with a blended authority structure of traditional authority and rational legal authority. How was traditional authority established in Canadian society? Can traditional authority enhance and/or complement rational legal authority in a modern nation state? What examples are there of traditional authority enhancing the quality of life in 21st-century societies?

Keywords: Traditional Authority, Bureaucratic Society, Legitimate Authority, Instrumental Reason, Canadian Monarchy, Governance, Constitutional Monarchy

The International Journal of Civic, Political, and Community Studies, Volume 14, Issue 2, June 2016, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: February 19, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 393.770KB)).

Dr. Richard D. Christy

Associate Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada