Charisma, Obama and Weber: A Discussion

Two things.  Here’s an interesting conversation between Paul Price and Craig Calhoun over at Societas:

In another conversation with Paul Price, Craig Calhoun continues his analysis of supposedly irrational factors at play in electoral politics. This time they focus on charisma: to what extent is Barack Obama’s unique mix of political passion and a cool demeanor the source of his political appeal? Referring to Max Weber’s model of charismatic leadership, Calhoun notes that Obama has the gift of making us see him as someone who stands outside the traditional structures of government-and therefore someone who can help Americans break the “iron cage” of bureaucracy, politics-as-usual and dominant social roles.

Click here to listen to the discussion.  Also, here’s a CFP for the Lighthearted Philosophers Society.

The CFP:

Lighthearted Philosophers Society: 2nd Annual Conference

Call For Papers

Date: October 17 – 18, 2008

Location: St. Petersburg College, St. Petersburg FL

Submission Deadline: August 15th, 2008

The Lighthearted Philosophers Society (LPS) is an organization for philosophers who approach their work with a sense of humor. In an effort to make philosophy more engaging, we are interested in original philosophical work that is presented in a humorous fashion. We are also interested in exploring serious philosophical questions about humor. Please join us in our merry ruminations!

We welcome witty papers from any area of philosophy, and we’d especially enjoy papers on the philosophy of humor. Papers that are funny will be given preference over those that aren’t, so brush up on your bad philosophical wisecracks.

Submission Requirements: Prepare submissions for blind review (separate cover sheet w/ contact info, affiliation, etc.) and include an abstract of less than 350 words (yes, we will be hand-counting them to the exact word). Be prepared to limit your time on stage (3,000 words is best); longer papers risk getting the hook or some thrown tomatoes, depending on whichever is handier at the time. We will have commentators, so please indicate whether you would be interested in heckling someone
else on the program. Those selected will be notified by Sept. 5th.

Please submit your papers electronically to the following email

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