Conclusion: Corruption, Development and De-development

  • Robin Theobald


The basic argument of this book has been that the phenomenon of political corruption — the illegal use of public office for private gain — can be understood only against a background of social and economic change. We have seen that in pre-modern societies some notion of the abuse of office certainly existed but since access to and behaviour within office were deeply embedded in the network of personal exchanges which underpinned the social order, a distinctive public sphere could not be clearly differentiated from private interests. Accusations of corruption, therefore, had about them a good deal of arbitrariness in the sense that they seldom conformed to legal criteria objectively applied. Generally speaking such accusations were closely bound up with and tended to reflect the interminable struggle between dominant factions for control over the state apparatus.


State Apparatus Political Corruption Political Action Committee Public Bureaucracy Death Squad 
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Copyright information

© Robin Theobald 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robin Theobald
    • 1
  1. 1.Polytechnic of Central LondonUK

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