In social science and politics, power is the ability to influence the behavior of people. The term authority is often used for power perceived as legitimate by the social structure. Power can be seen as evil or unjust, but the exercise of power is accepted as endemic to humans as social beings. In the corporate environment, power is often expressed as upward or downward. With downward power, a company's superior influences subordinates. When a company exerts upward power, it is the subordinates who influence the decisions of the leader .

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  1. Effectiveness.
    1. Capability or influence.
      An incident which happened about this time will set the characters of these two lads more fairly before the discerning reader than is in the power of the longest dissertation.
      Thwackum, on the contrary, maintained that the human mind, since the fall, was nothing but a sink of iniquity, till purified and redeemed by grace.The favourite phrase of the former, was the natural beauty of virtue; that of the latter, was the divine power of grace.
  1. Control, particularly legal or political (jurisdiction).
The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others ; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power. 1 We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power.
In the face of expanding federal power, California in particular struggled to maintain control over its Chinese population.
  1. The people in charge of legal or political power, the government.
  1. Influential nations, companies, or other such bodies.
  2. Effectiveness.
  3. Physical force or strength.
  4. Electricity or a supply of electricity.
    1. A measure of the rate of doing work or transferring energy.
  5. A rate to magnify an optical image by a lens or mirror.
  1. Effectiveness.
    1. A product of equal factors. Notation and usage: xn, read as "x to the power of n" or "x to the nth power", denotes x × x × ... × x, in which x appears n times, where n is called the exponent; the definition is extended to non-integer and complex exponents.
    2. Cardinality.
    3. The probability that a statistical test will reject the null hypothesis when the alternative hypothesis is true.
  2. In Christian angelology, the fourth level of angels, ranked above archangels and below principalities.


  1. To provide power for (a mechanical or electronic device).
    This CD player is powered by batteries.
  2. To hit or kick something forcefully.

The above text is a snippet from Wiktionary: power
and as such is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

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