It is commonly believed that anti-authoritarian society means the absence of authority. In fact, the exact opposite is true. The origin of the term, anti-authoritarian must be understood in its historical context. Anti-authoritarian means opposition to the authoritarian social order that existed prior to around 1960.
At that time the structure of the majority of the population and of society as a whole was authoritarian. Compared to today, society was well ordered. Individuals exercised essential authority and influence on the local and peripheral, not central levels of society. Authority consisted of both rational (constructive) and irrational (destructive) components. On the one hand, it served to protect certain core functions of life against impulses from the destructive middle layer. On the other hand, it opposed certain core functions , in particular, the sexual function in it’s role in regulating the individual’s energy economy. Depending on the degree to which authoritarianism was in conflict with the core functions, authority became increasingly irrational, repressive and destructive. Yet, conversely, authoritarian measures were often necessary to counteract the destructiveness of armored people.
To learn more about how our society was transformed from authoritarian to anti-authoritarian and the consequences of the transformation please refer to my recent book, Neither Left Nor Right.