Why have multitudes of followers throughout history become attracted to leaders who demand sacrifice, campaigns of war or other adventures with unpredictable outcomes? Why do they command such powerful control over their followers? Madness and Leadership studies leaders and followers from social, cultural, and biological perspectives and explores aspects of their personalities that induce them to assume their respective roles.
It proposes that leadership and followership are evolutionary adaptations, developed to enhance survival and group cohesion; that leaders possess certain biologically derived personality traits which set them apart and alert followers, consciously or unconsciously, of their status. Important factors that enhance leader emergence have been linked through evolution and are constituents of all societies, past and present. Within political theories and historical examples, this book carries the discussion on leadership into a new direction by suggesting that mild psychopathology is one of its central components
This pioneering multidisciplinary exploration of mental illness and leadership will give readers a better understanding of leadership phenomena, with a critical approach explaining why time and again followers choose leaders with psychological shortcomings. Papacostas’s biopsychosocial perspective will appeal to social scientists, linguists, neuroscientists, historians, and scholars and academics of leadership studies.