Tag: elite

An elite in political and sociological theory, is a small group of people who control a disproportionate amount of wealth or political power.
C. Wright Mills wrote in his 1957 book The Power Elite of the “elite” as “those political, economic, and military circles, which as an intricate set of overlapping small but dominant groups share decisions having at least national consequences. Insofar as national events are decided, the power elite are those who decide them.”
According to Mills, the governing elite in the US primarily draws its members from three areas: (i) the highest political leaders (including the president) and a handful of key cabinet members and close advisers; (ii) major corporate owners and directors; and (iii) high-ranking military officers. These groups overlap, and elites tend to circulate from one sector to another, consolidating power as they do so.
Unlike the ruling class, a social formation based on heritage and social ties, the power elite is characterized by…