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Full text of "Authority and the individual"

AUTHORITY   AND    THE   INDIVIDUAL
acquisition of new territory would be able to increase
its numbers. There would also in war be an obvious
advantage in an alliance of two or more tribes. If the
danger producing the alliance persisted, the alliance
would, in time, become an amalgamation. When a
unit became too large for all its members to know
each other, there would come to be a need of some
mechanism for arriving at collective decisions, and
this mechanism would inevitably develop by stages
into something that a modern man could recognize
as government. As soon as there is government some
men have more power than others, and the power
that they have depends, broadly speaking, upon the
size of the unit that they govern. Love of power,
therefore, will cause the governors to desire con-
quest. This motive is very much reinforced when the
vanquished are made into slaves instead of being
exterminated. In this way, at a very early stage, com-
munities arose in which, although primitive impulses
towards social co-operation still existed, they were
immensely reinforced by the power of the govern-
ment to punish those who disobeyed it. In the
earliest fully historical community, that of ancient
Egypt, we find a king whose powers over a large
territory were absolute, except for some limitation
by the priesthood, and we find a large servile popula-
tion whom the king could, at his will, employ upon
State enterprises such as the Pyramids. In such a
community only a minority at the top of the social
scale—the king, the aristocracy, and the priests-^~
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