Professional Elites in "Classes" Societies

25 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 2003

See all articles by S.J. Magala

S.J. Magala

Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM)

Date Written: 17 2003, 10


Modern European identity has been forged in class struggles between the French revolution and fall of the Berlin Wall, which fell twice. Once, with the rest of the city in May 1945, when a national socialist alternative to a modernizing mix of parliamentary democracy and market economy crumbled after the hot WWII, and second time in November 1989, when a state socialist alternative crumbled after the Cold War. At the same time working class in the USA abandoned trade unions and class struggle buying shares, dreaming of upward social mobility within a middle class show and re-enchanting consumer lives in Las Vegas and Disneyland. Meanwhile, American intellectuals servicing the US power elite dismiss European elites as "Euroweenies" unable to stand up for "the West" against "the rest" of the world. Are they right? Have Europeans ungratefully forgotten the US support in times of two world wars? Aren't European professional elites able to convince the rest of citizens about advantages of western solidarity in view of terrorist threats? Are the identities of the US and European professional elites tightly linked or loosely coupled? Are European elites more successful in preventing masses from bowling alone?

Keywords: elite, humanities, classics, ivory tower, sillicon valley, the magic mountain, davos

JEL Classification: M, M10, L2, A14

Suggested Citation

Magala, Slawomir J., Professional Elites in "Classes" Societies (17 2003, 10). Available at SSRN:

Slawomir J. Magala (Contact Author)

Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM)

P.O. Box 1738
3000 DR Rotterdam

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