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This is an often applied and frequently controversial concept in the field of family therapy. From a rigorously cybernetic point of view, power can be conceptualized as follows: A's power over B shows itself in A's ability to define a context in which a relatively lineal relationship between cause and effect is established (or represented) between A and B's behavior. This relationship can be limited in time or restricted to certain areas of relational complementarity.

Definition extracted with permission from Simon, Fritz, et al, Family Process, Inc.Language of Family Therapy: A Systemic Vocabulary and Source Book (Family Process Press Series)

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