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Who promoted ‘The Elitist Theory and Concept of Democracy’?

Last updated date: 13th Jun 2024
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Hint:The theory is related to the subject of political science and sociology. Democracy is concerned with the equality in political matters of citizens. It explains the relationship in the contemporary world.

Complete answer:
Elitist Theory is defined as the theory of a state which describes and explains the power relationships in contemporary society. The theory explains that the majority power is enjoyed by only a small group of persons who possess high prestige and have great influence. The governing or the powerful group control the decision making process, possess their personal resources like intelligence and skills. The power is concentrated in the hands of the elites and the rest of the population are powerless who are to be governed. This theory represents the actual or the practical working of the political system which is differentiated on various characteristics such as ability, experience and wealth etc.
Vilfredo Pareto, Gaetano Mosca and Robert Michels are known to be the prominent founders of the Italian School of Elitism. According to Pareto, there were two types of elites – Governing and non-governing elites, i.e. which possess power and rule the population and the other who are governed or ruled by the ruling party. Mosca focused on the political and the non-political class who are organized and unorganized respectively. Robert emphasized that the social and political organizations work only through the efforts of few individuals.

Note: Robert Michels also formulated the ‘Iron Law of Oligarchy’. The Elite Theory is often considered to be one-sided theory and partial theory. The term ‘power elite’ was coined by Charles Wright Mills in the book ‘The Power Elite’ in the year 1956.