The Power Elite
  • PublisherOxford University Press
  • LanguageEnglish
  • Publication Date2000/02/17
  • Size13.5 x 20.1 x 2.5 cm
  • Page448Page
  • BindingPaperback
  • Weight(kg)0.37kg
  • ISBN9780195133547
Regular PriceHK$180

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The Power Elite

Book Information
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.
Author Description
Charles Wright Mills (August 28, 1916 – March 20, 1962) was an American sociologist, and a professor of sociology at Columbia University from 1946 until his death in 1962. Mills was published widely in popular and intellectual journals, and is remembered for several books, among them The Power Elite, which introduced that term and describes the relationships and class alliances among the U.S. political, military, and economic elites; White Collar, on the American middle class; and The Sociological Imagination, where Mills proposes the proper relationship in sociological scholarship between biography and history. Mills was concerned with the responsibilities of intellectuals in post-World War II society, and advocated public and political engagement over uninterested observation. Mills' biographer, Daniel Geary, writes that his writings had a ""particularly significant impact on New Left social movements of the 1960s."" It was Mills who popularized the term ""New Left"" in the U.S. in a 1960 open letter, Letter to the New Left.