2.8.1 Domains of Power

The term ‘domains of power’ describes the extent of different kinds of governance influence, which can be geographically scattered

A power relationship exists between a recognised authority and the people who are subject to it.  A simple example might be a monarchy, where a ruler exerts political and legal power over the population within a defined territory. 

Some domains are less clearly defined and more geographically dispersed.  The Archbishop of Canterbury, for example, exerts varying degrees of influence over those who count themselves as Anglicans in the different countries they inhabit.  The presence of Anglicans within a monarchy is an illustration of the way in which domains of power can overlap each other. 

The concept of overlapping domains can provide useful clarification when considering some complex political situations.  One highly contentious example, of the relationship between the State of Israel and the many non-Jewish people who live there, is addressed later in this book as an example of political subsidiarity (

Any individual person might be subject to many forms of power and influence.

Power might not be uniformly distributed within a domain.  The economic power of a company, for example, might be stronger in markets where there are fewer competitors.



This page is intended to form part of Edition 4 of the Patterns of Power series of books.  An archived copy of it is held at https://www.patternsofpower.org/edition04/281.htm.