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The State: Its History and Development Viewed Sociologically
This little book has made its way. In addition to the present translation into English, there are authorized editions in French, Hungarian and Serbian. I am also informed that there are translations published in Japanese, Russian, Hebrew and Yiddish; but these, of course, are pirated. The book has stood the test of criticism, and has been judged both favorably and unfavorably. It has, unquestionably, revived the discussion on the origin and essence of the State. Several prominent ethnologists, particularly Holsti, the present Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Finnish Free State, have attacked the basic principle formulated and demonstrated in this Work, but they have failed, because their definition of the State assumed the very matter that required to be proven. They have brought together a large array of facts in proof of the existence of some forms of Government and Leadership, even where no classes obtained, and to the substance of these forms they have given the name of The State. It is not my intention to controvert these facts. It is self-evident, that in any group of human beings, be it ever so small, there must exist an authority which determines conflicts and, in extraordinary situations, assumes the leadership. But this authority is not The State,iv in the sense in which I use the word. The State may be defined as an organization of one class dominating over the other classes. Such a class organization can come about in one way only, namely, through conquest and the subjection of ethnic groups by the dominating group. This can be demonstrated with almost mathematical certainty. Not one of my critics has brought proofs to invalidate this thesis. Most modern sociologists, among whom may be named Albion Small, Alfred Vierkandt and Wilhelm Wundt, accept this thesis. Wilhelm Wundt, in particular, asserts in unmistakable language, that the political society (a term identical with the State in the sense employed in this book) first came about and could originate only in the period of migration and conquest, whereby the subjugation of one people by another was effected. But even some of my opponents are favorably inclined to my arguments, as in the case of the venerable Adolf Wagner, whose words I am proud to quote. In his article on The State in the Handwrterbuch der Staatswissenschaften, he writes: The sociologic concept of the State, to which I have referred, particularly in the broad scope and treatment of it given by Oppenheimer, deserves careful consideration, especially from political economists and political historians. The vista opened out, from this point of view, of the economic development of peoples and that of the State during historic times, should be attractive even to the opponents of the concept itself. ......Buy Now (To Read More)
Ebook Number: 51544
Author: Oppenheimer, Franz
Release Date: Mar 24, 2016
Translator: Gitterman, John M. (John Milton)
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