Madness and Leadership

Madness and Leadership

From Antiquity to the New Common Era

New Horizons in Leadership Studies series

Savvas Papacostas

Madness and Leadership studies leaders and followers from social, cultural, and biologic perspectives and explores aspects of their personalities that induce them to assume their respective roles. It proposes that leadership and followership are evolutionary adaptations, developed to enhance survival and group cohesion; that leaders possess certain biologically-derived personality traits which set them apart and alert followers, consciously or unconsciously, of their status. Important factors that enhance leader emergence have been linked through evolution and are constituents of all societies past and present. Within political theories and historical examples, this book carries the discussion on leadership into a new direction by suggesting that mild psychopathology is one of its central components.

Chapter 6: Abnormal behaviour

Savvas Papacostas

Subjects: business and management, business leadership


Justice is a political virtue, by the rules of it the state is regulated, and these rules are the criterion of what is right. Aristotle, Politics Abnormal behaviour can be defined in various ways and from different perspectives. As we saw previously, society determines the limits of tolerance regarding the way it expects its members to act. It sets the boundaries of what is normal and what is abnormal. Each social group, be it a whole culture, a kindergarten class, a monastic order, a church choir, or a terrorist organization has its own set of rules that members are expected to observe. Hunter and gatherer culture expects men to hunt animals, and women to gather fruits and vegetables; pre-school children are taught and expected to sit quietly in class while the teacher is talking; monks are expected to gather for evensong, pray in solitude, and harvest their fields at the set schedule of their specific order; a choir member is expected to sing in unison according to his/her assigned place and not be out of tune; and a terrorist is obliged to accept his group’s manifesto.

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