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  The Professional Soldier By Giuseppe CaforioWho is the professional soldier? First of all we have to say he can be identified with two different figures.If we consider the concept of profession as it has prevalently been elaborated by sociological theory (Greenwood, !"#$ %illerson,!&'$ %oore, !#), we see that the classic *ilitary sociologists (+untington, !"#$ anowit-, !&) consider only officers as professionals. ccording to this interpretation, /C0s belong to the se*i1professional category, while for ran2 and file soldiers, even those in lifeti*e service, we can spea2 only of occupation.+owever, if we want to consider the professional soldier in a broader sense, substantially contrasted with draftees and reservists, then all those who are e*ployed in the ar*ed forces with long1ter* or lifeti*e contracts for *ilitary duties () are professionals. For the sa2e of the co*pleteness appropriate in a publication li2e this one, we shall treat the professional soldier in accordance with  both views, but separately.3 3 3 profession is defined, according to the structuralist *odel (the one *ost often applied in our discipline (4)), by a certain set of attributes (Greenwood, !"#) which for 5a*uel +untington (+untington, !"#) are expertise, responsibility , and corporateness , while for %orris anowit- (anowit-, !&) they are6 a core of skills that are hard to master and of considerable social importance, an own organisation, autonomy or self-rule, an ethical code, a system of compulsion . lbeit with different nuances, these two authors, considered the fathers of conte*porary sociology of the *ilitary, believe that in the fra*ewor2 of the *ilitary institution the officer corps and it alone responds to the ideal1type of profession thus defined.7espite the officer8s being considered therefore prevalently a professional, his profession displays  particular characteristics, in that it ta2es place within an institution where bureaucratic aspects blend with *ore strictly professional ones. +untington8s initial idea (op. cit.) of considering that of the  officer li2e a professional bureaucracy, characterised by a dyna*ic e9uilibriu* between  bureaucratisation and professionalisation, *eets with broad consensus in subse9uent studies (:randstraller, !;"$ Caforio !;;).But our professional soldier finds other i*portant typifications which, in part, confir* the pluralistic hypotheses (see note 4). <he officer is indeed conceived both as heroic leader and as *ilitary *anager and=or *ilitary technologist (anowit-, !&$ Bauco*, !;"), where with heroic leader e*phasis is placed on the traditional, warrior, charis*atic aspect of the professional soldier, while the *ilitary *anager is considered *ore ai*ed at a rational organisation of the *eans to achieve the ob>ectives of *ilitary action. <he *ilitary technologist, considered by so*e a subfigure of the *ilitary *anager, is instead viewed as the leader in possession of elevated scientific 2nowledge and capable of organising the* and using the* for *ilitary purposes.7espite the general agree*ent on the eistence of these three aspects in the professional soldier, they are considered differently in the contet of officership. ccording to so*e, the pure pluralists (ordan and <aylor, !#@$ +auser, !;'), these aspects produce three different typologies of the  professional soldier, present si*ultaneously in the officer corps, so that one cannot spea2 of a unitary *ilitary profession. For others, the different aspects coeist in the officer, and the professional soldier appears *ore characterised by one than the other at different ti*es (Bauco*, !;"). <he change over ti*e of the dialectical relationship of these professional aspects in a concrete officership  produces a change of the profession itself, according to various dichoto*ies proposed by scholars6 the best 2nown configure a process of *ove*ent fro* institution to occupation (%os2os, !##) and fro* divergence to convergence toward civil society (anowit-, !&).A*pirical investigation has helped to identify what aspects are actually present and prevalent and what direction change see*s to be heading in. Auropean research, for instance (Caforio, !!'), showed that the two prevalent dichoto*ies, at least in the contet ea*ined, are those between profession=occupation and between convergence=divergence vis11vis civil society. For what regards the for*er, the Auropean officer showed a growing percentage of occupational positions (the *ilitary li2e another >ob), while the   professional position, still largely predo*inant, showed itself to be divided into a radically and strictly professional position and a *uch *ore fleible one to which we gave the na*e prag*atic  professionalD (Caforio, !!'). <he officer in this position, which displays an upward trend in  percentage ter*s, *aintains traditional and ideal professional values, stressing nevertheless a strong interest in daily life and fa*ily, the world of wor2, and the parent society$ his world of values, although conserving the traditional *ilitary ones, at the sa*e ti*e appears very close to the values of civilian professionals.lso the convergence=divergence dichoto*y displays, in the concreteness of e*pirical investigation, a *iddle tendency, opposed to any polarisation.<he growth of  Military Operations Other Than War   in recent years see*s to have accentuated the tendencies cited above (Caforio, 4).s already *entioned, the category of /C0s is today *ostly considered se*i1professional (:randstraller, !; and !;"$ Caforio, !!#), as it lac2s one or *ore attributes for being considered a profession or, according to others, presents one or *ore attributes that are not co*pletely developed (<oren, !&!)$ but today so*e also consider their separation fro* the officers category outdated or, at least, peripheral (7ownes, !;"). <his is in fact so*e overlap between the two categories, both because epert /C0s are today often called upon to perfor* the sa*e functions as low1ran2ing officers, and because the specialisations that *any /C0s achieve today enables the* to *aster a sector of activity that, due to its co*pleity and i*portance, one can often consider e9uivalent to those entrusted to >unior officers. +owever, /C0s have so far not received the sa*e a*ount of attention fro* researchers as officers, and in any case less than they deserve.3 3 3Considering the professional soldier in a broad sense, including under this ter* all those who share a legal status, a salary syste*, a pension syste* and, in a certain *easure, codes of ethics and of conduct, *eans first and fore*ost ea*ining hi* in co*parison with the traditional conscript.It *ust first be observed that while the figure of the professional ran2 and file soldier was *arginal in the classic sociology of +untington and anowit- (and therefore studied little or not at all), the  situation today is co*pletely different, since *ost ar*ies are for*ed of conscripts. In addition to the *erican post1Eietna* turning point, a survey conducted on " Western Auropean countries by arl +altiner (+altiner, 4@) shows that, in the !#s, only two countries a*ong those ea*ined (the  and Ireland) based their defence on an all1volunteer force (EF), while today eight of those countries have i*ple*ented or are i*ple*enting a transition fro* the conscript ar*y to EF. /ot only6 the percentage of conscripts in the ar*ed forces (conscript ratio) has fallen sharply in the re*aining seven countries as well.<he return to professional ar*ies (historically disappeared after the French Hevolution) has brought the e*ergence of a professional ran2 and file soldier and all the proble*s connected with it,  proble*s studied by the sociology of the *ilitary, first *erican (@) but later also Auropean and non1Auropean (').<he regular ran2 and file soldier presents a nu*ber of aspects and proble*s that are *ore or less non1eistent for ran2 and file conscripts. +e has a tendentially lifeti*e >ob, receives a real salary, social security and a pension, aspires to career develop*ent, has de*ands for union representation, has or eventually creates a fa*ily that has to be ta2en into account, and a house or other living arrange*ent of a continuing nature. In addition to this, he ages, and this *ust also be considered, either for ree*ploy*ent in logistical1ad*inistrative tas2s, or for a planned transition to a civilian >ob.<he professional soldier in a broad sense therefore presents a proble*atical field of study for the sociology of the *ilitary, studies we can only give a brief sa*pling of here in the bibliographical references.111111111111111111111()With the eclusion of the civilian, non1*ilitary personnel who in *any ar*ies carry out logistical, ad*inistrative and other tas2s.(4)0thers are the process *odel, which studies the professions in their historical process of  professionalisation and ac9uisition of social legiti*ation (braha*son, !#4$ Ean 7oorn, !&"), and the pluralist or seg*ented *odel (ourvetaris and 7obrat-, !##), which holds that the  *ilitary profession cannot be treated as a single whole, but *ust be considered in its various internal specialisations.(@)5ee Bradford et al., !#'$ Bach*an et al., !##$ Bur2, !!4.(')5ee Boene and %artin, !!$ van der %eulen and %anigart, !!'. Bibliographical References Bengt braha*son,  Military professionalization and political power, (Beverly +ills, 5age,!#4)..G. Bach*an, .7. Blair, 7. 5egal, The All olunteer !orce  (nn rbor, niv. of %ichigan :ress, !##).7onald H. Bauco*, <he professional soldier and the warrior spirit,D "trategic #e$iew  (Fall !;"), #14'.Bernard Boene and %ichel %artin, %onscription et arm&e de m&tier   (:aris6 FA7/, !!)..B. Bradford and F.G. Brown, The 'nited "tates Army in Transition  (Beverly +ills, 5age, !#').a*es Bur2, <he decline of *ass ar*ed forces and co*pulsory *ilitary service,D  (efence Analysis , ;,  (!!4), '"1'!.Giuseppe Caforio, <he *ilitary profession6 theories of change,D  Armed !orces ) "ociety , ",  (Fall !;;), ""1#.Giuseppe Caforio (ed.), <he *ilitary profession in Aurope,D %urrent "ociology , Jondon, 5age, '4, @ (!!').Giuseppe Caforio, Ja professione *ilitare in Italia,D in G uardare alle professioni , ed. Gian :aolo :randstraller (%ilan, Franco ngeli, !!#), 4!"1@&.Giuseppe Caforio (ed.), The !lexible Officer* +rofessional ducation and Military Operations Other Than War, a %ross-ational Analysis  (Gaeta, rtistic K :ublishing Co*pany, 4).Cathy 7ownes, <o be or not to be a profession6 the *ilitary case,D  (efence Analysis , @ (!;"), '#1#.
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