How do influential leaders use language to engage followers? Can we distinguish a toxic leader from an ethical one based on use of language?

Business and Management INK

How do influential leaders use language to engage followers? Can we distinguish a toxic leader from an ethical one based on use of language? A new study in the Journal of Management Inquiry (JMI) highlights the fascinating differences in the rhetoric of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Adolf Hitler to understand how different types of charismatic leaders communicate their visions. Jill L. Robinson and Danielle Topping, both of the University of Redlands, published “The Rhetoric of Power: A Comparison of Hitler and Martin Luther King Jr.”  on July 24, 2012 in JMI. Click here to read more OnlineFirst articles.

The abstract:

Charismatic leaders present intriguing examples of the use of power through language. The prevailing neo-charismatic perspective, however, is based predominately on Western theories and research examining U.S. presidents. This study moves beyond this sample by examining language differences between a moral and a toxic leader…

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