Social positioning and the pursuit of power

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Tony Lawson has recently advanced a theory of social positioning, in terms of which various aspects of social reality are conceptualised. A central idea of the theory of social positioning is that social relations are ultimately power relationships, which structure how social phenomena are organised. This article further explores this idea, while also conceptualising various forms of power, such as coercion, manipulation, domination and subjectification, drawing on the theory of social positioning. In so doing, the theory of social positioning is also used to explain how institutionalisation influences the dynamics of empowerment and disempowerment, and its implications for human development and dehumanisation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-291
Number of pages17
JournalCambridge Journal of Economics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2022


  • Social positioning
  • Power
  • Embodied dispositions
  • Institutionalisation
  • Organisation


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