The Power Elite (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Oxford University Press, Dec 13, 1999 - Social Science - 448 pages
23 Reviews
First published in 1956, The Power Elite stands as a contemporary classic of social science and social criticism. C. Wright Mills examines and critiques the organization of power in the United States, calling attention to three firmly interlocked prongs of power: the military, corporate, and political elite. The Power Elite can be read as a good account of what was taking place in America at the time it was written, but its underlying question of whether America is as democratic in practice as it is in theory continues to matter very much today. What The Power Elite informed readers of in 1956 was how much the organization of power in America had changed during their lifetimes, and Alan Wolfe's astute afterword to this new edition brings us up to date, illustrating how much more has changed since then. Wolfe sorts out what is helpful in Mills' book and which of his predictions have not come to bear, laying out the radical changes in American capitalism, from intense global competition and the collapse of communism to rapid technological transformations and ever changing consumer tastes. The Power Elite has stimulated generations of readers to think about the kind of society they have and the kind of society they might want, and deserves to be read by every new generation.
  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
11
4 stars
7
3 stars
3
2 stars
2
1 star
0

Review: The Power Elite

User Review  - Blaise Lucey - Goodreads

A quote that should make you read The Power Elite: "On the one hand, there is the increased scale and centralization of the structure of decision; and, on the other, the increasingly narrow sorting ... Read full review

Review: The Power Elite

User Review  - William Leight - Goodreads

"The Power Elite" hasn't really aged all that well. Not because its arguments are no longer applicable to the modern world, as the rather self-satisfied afterword to my edition asserts, but for ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

1 The Higher Circles
3
2 Local Society
30
3 Metropolitan 400
47
4 The Celebrities
71
5 The Very Rich
94
6 The Chief Executives
118
7 The Corporate Rich
147
8 The Warlords
171
11 The Theory of Balance
242
12 The Power Elite
269
13 The Mass Society
298
14 The Conservative Mood
325
15 The Higher Immorality
343
Afterword
363
Acknowledgments
382
Notes
384

9 The Military Ascendancy
198
10 The Political Directorate
225

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1999)

The late C. Wright Mills, Professor of Sociology at Columbia University, was a leading critic of modern American civilization. Alan Wolfe is University Professor and Professor of Political Science and Sociology at Boston University. He is the author or editor of more than ten books, including Marginalized in the Middle and One Nation, After All.

The late C. Wright Mills, Professor of Sociology at Columbia University, was a leading critic of modern American civilization. Alan Wolfe is University Professor and Professor of Political Science and Sociology at Boston University. He is the author or editor of more than ten books, including Marginalized in the Middle and One Nation, After All.

Bibliographic information