(From authority: L. auctoritatem: power, force, order, dignity). 1) Irrational faith in and obedience to the person, institution, or social group that is considered the source of authority. 2) Anti-democratic political regime based on the unlimited power of a single person, institution, or social group, which sustains itself through manipulation and violence. 3) A form of dogmatism that considers authority the only or supreme source of wisdom or ethics. N.H. condemns all forms and manifestations of a. as incompatible with the freedom of people, and it points out a path and method of struggle for replacing a. through the democratization and modernization of society.