The Heroic Leadership Imperative: How Leaders Inspire and Mobilize Change

Scott T. Allison
University of Richmond, USA

George R. Goethals
University of Richmond, USA

Product Details
20 Jul 2020
Emerald Publishing Limited
144 pages - 129 x 198mm
Emerald Points
Leaders are expected to be heroic. That is, they are expected to serve three needs of their followers: (1) basic individual needs; (2) group and collective identity needs; and (3) transcendent needs. 

The Heroic Leadership Imperative illustrates how leaders who fulfill these expectations succeed attracting followers and initiating social change. Here Scott T. Allison and George R. Goethals identify leaders who have succeeded in meeting all three categories of needs—individuals such as Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, Donald Trump, as well as cult leaders such as Jim Jones—and they discuss such leaders' appeal by way of a unique integration of classic and contemporary psychology relevant to understanding all facets of heroism and heroic leadership. In so doing, the authors explore how heroes and villains have used this leadership imperative to fulfill their ambitions, and provide valuable insights into how societies can avoid falling under the spell of charismatic leaders who misuse the leadership imperative.

For its broad historical coverage, interdisciplinary approach, and relevance to current events, this book is a must-read for scholars and students of leadership studies, and it is of interest to anyone concerned with the political and social upheavals of the past five years.
Chapter 1. First Imperative: Meeting Individual-Level Needs 
Chapter 2. Second Imperative: Meeting Group Level Needs 
Chapter 3. Third Imperative: Meeting Transcendent-Level Needs 
Chapter 4. Concluding Thoughts About the Leadership Imperative
Scott T. Allison is Professor of Psychology at the University of Richmond, where he has published extensively on heroism and leadership. His books include Heroes, The Romance of Heroism and Heroic Leadership and Handbook of Heroism and Heroic Leadership.

George R. Goethals holds the E. Claiborne Robins Distinguished Professorship in Leadership Studies at the University of Richmond. His books include Realignment, Region, and Race: Presidential Leadership and Social Identity and Realignment, Region, and Race: Presidential Leadership and Social Identity.

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