Intrigue and Unsolved Mysteries

What is Herrschaftsverband?


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In German Herrschaftsverband (please note the spelling) literally means something like association of rule. It is used almost exclusively to describe the European Union, though the term is older.

I've seen sovereingty association used as an English translation, but I can't imagine that the term would convey much to English-speaking specialists in politics.

The term Herrschaftsverband is an obscure sociological term used to convey the concept of power differentials within a social unit or organization that is very rigidly hierarchical. It can be used to describe the gap in political, social, moral, legislative, economic, and other forms of power between disadvantaged groups and their more advantaged counterparts. One of the most common examples of this is economic in which we could say that there is distinct Herrschaftsverband within the U.S. economy with a great deal of the wealth being held by a small upper echelon. As a sociologist, this word is one of my few rewards, as it's ridiculous fun to say.