Posted on 28/11/2013
People have been horrified by the story of three women in London who were rescued by the police from what was initially described as a case of ‘slavery.’ It has since emerged that they were part of a small political collective for over 30 years, run by a married couple. Dennis Tourish is Professor of Leadership at the School of Management and an expert on political cults, whose latest book ‘The Dark Side of Transformational Leadership’ explores how manipulative leaders can sometimes exercise total control over their followers. Dennis has been interviewed throughout the week on all the main UK news programmes including Sky and BBC World News, to provide expert commentary on a case that has fascinated and appalled both the media and the public.
He says: ‘It is far from unprecedented to find people attracted to an individual who promises them a way to change the world, and add meaning to their own lives. They are then encouraged to gradually increase their commitment to the group’s activities, so that eventually it monopolises their time and their thinking. This appalling example warns all of us of the need to retain our ability to think for ourselves, and never to imagine that any one person or small group has all the answers to our problems.’
Nick Cohen, `The real cultists are not Maoists, they're CEOs', The Observer, 30th November 2013
Neil Tweedie, `Credulity, fear and leaders like gods, the secret world of cults', The Telegraph, 2nd December 2013
Presenter Phillip Adams, Australian Radio National, Late Night Live:`London Slavery Case', 4th December 2013 - Listen Now
Kristine Kwok, `Mao Zedong still has resonance with overseas groups', South China Morning Post, 22nd December 2013