Where There’s Smoke, Is There Fire? Crisis and Charisma in the California Recall Election

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Drucker School of Management (CGU)

Publication Date



Leadership Studies


This article explores the relationship between perceptions of crisis and charismatic leadership, investigating how the situation and the characteristics of both the leader and the follower combine to create a charismatic leader. The article states that there are situational factors which create opportunities for both leaders and followers to act in ways that create a potentially fertile ground for charismatic leadership. The article studies the 2003 gubernatorial election in California that involved Gray Davis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Cruz Bustamante.

Rights Information

© 2004 Academy of Management.