Leadership in Democracy


    THE seventh Walker Trust Lecture on Leadership entitled “Leadership in Democracy” delivered before the University of St. Andrews by Lord Lloyd on November 14 has been issued in pamphlet form (Oxford University Press. 2s.). Lord Lloyd insists that leadership is not the art of becoming and remaining a leader, but the art of leading. It is the opposite of dictatorship, inspiring free men with the feeling of moral obligation to follow. It requires will directed to a high purpose, clearly realized and defined, and courageously pursued. The need for leadership in a democracy, moreover, is oven more urgent than in other forms of government because democracy as we know it in Great Britain is a new and untried system of government with no legal restrictions of rights on majority opinion. Lord Lloyd attributes the difficulties and dangers confronting us to-day largely to the absence of leaders who are able to inspire and guide the wills of men to the accomplishment of a high and disinterested purpose. Failure to make up our minds to positive action and to educate and enlighten public opinion has involved incalculable risks. The peril of democracy is its own failure to find the leadership necessary to make its high and necessary ideals triumphant in a world where men are neither naturally wise nor naturally virtuous.

    Rights and permissions

    Reprints and Permissions

    About this article

    Cite this article

    Leadership in Democracy. Nature 144, 359–360 (1939). https://doi.org/10.1038/144359b0

    Download citation


    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.