Advertisement

Community Elites and Power Structure

  • Rikki Abzug
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)

Abstract

Where has the study of community elites in the United States gone? Has anyone read any good research lately on the structure (inclusion, exclusion, etc.) or influence (power) of community or local elites? At a time when media, both local and national, are screaming about the liberal elite or the conservative elite, it is hard to follow the power/community elite research trail begun by sociologists in the mid-twentieth century. How did we come to this juncture where community elite studies as a field is practically nonexistent and studies of community or local elites are, at best, hard to find? It is the intention of this chapter to follow (using the guidance of particularly adept meta-analyses) the historical trajectory and great debates of elite studies (largely within sociology but with help from political scientists and network and management theorists) to the point at which they very nearly dropped off and were largely replaced (in organizational sociology, anyway) with studies of increasingly national “inner circles” (Useem, 1984) and interlocking directorates [see, for example, (1981a)]. This includes detailing the literature and the concepts that arose to take the place of community elite studies and suggestions on under what rubrics to find community elite studies today.

Keywords

Power Structure American Sociological Review American Political Science Review Gated Community Local Elite 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Abzug, R. and Galaskiewicz, J. (2001). Nonprofit boards: Crucibles of expertise or symbols of local identities. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, 30:51–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Abzug, R., DiMaggio, P.J., Gray, B.H., Kang, C.H., and Useem, M. (1993). Variations in trusteeship: Cases from Boston and Cleveland, 1925–1985. Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Non-Profit Organizations, 4:271–300.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aiken, M. and Alford, R. (1970). Community structure and innovation: The case of public housing. The American Political Science Review, 64, 843–864.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Alba, R.D. and Moore, G. (1982). Ethnicity in the American elite. American Sociological Review, 47:373–383.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Alford, R. (1975). Health Care Politics. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  6. Allen, M.P. (1974). The structure of interorganizational elite cooptation: Interlocking corporate directorates. American Sociological Review, 39:393–406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bachrach, P. and Baratz, M. (1962). Two faces of power. American Political Science Review, 56:947–952.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Baltzell, E. (1958). Philadelphia Gentlemen: The Making of a National Upper Class. Chicago: Quadrangle.Google Scholar
  9. Berle, A.A. and Means, G.G. (1932/1968). The Modern Corporation and Private Property (12th edn.). New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction.Google Scholar
  10. Blakely, E.J. and Snyder, M.G. (1997). Fortress America: Gated Communities in the United States. Washington, DC: Brookings.Google Scholar
  11. Bonjean, C.M., Clark, T.N., and Lineberry, R.L. (1971). Community Politics: A Behavioral Approach. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  12. Brint, S. (1997). Untitled review. The American Journal of Sociology, 103:487–489.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Burris, V. (2001). The two faces of capital: Corporations and individual capitalists as political actors. American Sociological Review, 66:361–381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Calhoun, C.J. (1983). The radicalism of tradition: Community strength or venerable disguise and borrowed language? The American Journal of Sociology, 88:886–914.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Clark, T.N. (1968). Community Structure and Decision Making: Comparative Analyses. San Francisco: Chandler.Google Scholar
  16. Clawson, D., Neustadtl, A., and Bearden, J. (1986). The logic of business unity: Corporate contributions to the 1980 Congressional elections. American Sociological Review, 51:797–811.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Coleman, J.S. (1974). Power and Structure of Society. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  18. Dahl, R. (1961). Who Governs? Democracy and Power in American City. New Haven: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Davis, G.F. and Greve, H.R. (1997). Corporate elite networks and governance changes in the 1980s. The American Journal of Sociology, 103:1–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Domhoff, W. (1967/1983). Who Rules America Now? Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  21. Domhoff, W. (1978). The Power That Be. New York: Vintage.Google Scholar
  22. Domhoff, G.W. (2005a). Power in America: Atlanta: Floyd Hunter Was Right. Retreived on 01/23/05 from: http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/atlanta.html.Google Scholar
  23. Domhoff, G.W. (2005b). Power in America: Power at the Local Level: Growth Coalition Theory. Retreived on 01/23/05 from: http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/local.html.Google Scholar
  24. Dooley, P.C. (1969). The interlocking directorate. The American Economic Review, 59:314–323.Google Scholar
  25. Dreiling, M.C. (2000). The class embeddedness of corporate political action: Leadership in defense of the NAFTA. Social Problems 47:21–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Dye, T.R. (1976). Who’s Running America? Institutional Leadership in the United States. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  27. Farazmand, A. (1999). The elite question: Toward a normative elite theory of organization. Administration & Society, 31:321–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Feiock, R. and Carr, J. (2000). Private incentives and academic entrepreneurs: The promotion of city/county consoli-dation. Public Administration Quarterly, 24:223–245Google Scholar
  29. Frank, T. (2004). What’s the Matter with Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America. New York: Owl.Google Scholar
  30. Galaskiewicz, J. and Shatin, D. (1981). Leadership and networking among neighborhood human service organizations. Administrative Science Quarterly, 26:434–448.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Heying, C. (1995). Civic elites, civic institutions, and the urban growth dynamic. Unpublished doctoral dissertation: University of North Carolina: Chapel Hill.Google Scholar
  32. Higley, J. and Moore, G. (1981). Elite integration in the United States and Australia. American Political Science Review, 75:581–597.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Hunter, F. (1953). Community Power Structure: A Study of Decision Makers. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  34. Jaher, F.C. (Ed). (1973). The Rich, the Well Born and the Powerful: Elites and Upper Classes in History. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.Google Scholar
  35. Jenkins, J.C. and Shumate, T. (1985). Cowboy capitalists and the rise of the’ new right.’ Social Problems, 33:130–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kornblum, W. (1974). Blue Collar Community. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  37. Kuhn, T. (1962). The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  38. Lasch, C. (1995). The Revolt of the Elites and the Betrayal of Democracy. New York: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  39. Laumann, E.O. and Pappi, F.U. (1973). New directions in the study of community elites. American Sociological Review, 38(2):212–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Laumann, E.O., Galaskiewicz, J., and Marsden, P.V. (1978). Community structure as interorganizational linkages. Annual Review of Sociology, 4:455–484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Logan, J.R. and Molotch, H. (1987). Urban Fortunes: The Political Economy of Place. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  42. Lyon, L.J. (1987/1999). The Community in Urban Society. Long Grove, IL: Waveland.Google Scholar
  43. Marquis, C. and Davis, G. F. (2004) Golfing Alone? Elite Cohesion and Community Social Capital, 1986–1998. University of Michigan: working paper.Google Scholar
  44. McGuire, K.T. (1993). The Supreme Court Bar: Legal Elites in the Washington Community. Charlottesville, VA: University Press of Virginia.Google Scholar
  45. Miller, W. (1958). Untitled review. American Sociological Review, 23:451–452.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Mills, C.W. (1953). Untitled review. Social Forces, 32(1):92–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Mills, C.W. (1956). The Power Elite. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  48. Minar, D.M. and Greer, S. (1969). The Concept of Community: Readings with Interpretations. Chicago: Aldine.Google Scholar
  49. Mintz, B. and Schwartz, M. (1981a). Interlocking directorates and interest group formation. American Sociological Review, 46:851–869.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Mintz, B. and Schwartz, M. (1981b). The structure of intercorporate unity in American business. Social Problems, 29(2):87–103.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Mintz, B., Freitag, P., Hendricks, C., and Schwartz, M. (1976). Problems of proof in elite research. Social Problems, 23:314–324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Mizruchi, M.S. (1989). Similarity of political behavior among large American corporations. American Journal of Sociology, 95:401–424CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Mizruchi, M.S. and Koenig, T. (1986). Economic sources of corporate political consensus: An examination of interindustry relations. American Sociological Review, 51:482–491.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Molotch, H. (1976). The city as a growth machine. American Journal of Sociology, 82:309–330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Nisbet, R. (1953). The Quest for Community: A Study in the Ethics of Order & Freedom. San Francisco: ICS.Google Scholar
  56. Odendahl, T. (1990). Charity Begins at Home: Generosity and Self-Interest Among the Philanthropic Elite. New York: Basic.Google Scholar
  57. Palmer, D., Friedland, R., and Singh, J.V. (1986). The ties that bind: Organizational and class bases of stability in a corporate interlock network. American Sociological Review, 51:781–796.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Parsons, T. (1953). A revised analytical approach to the theory of social stratification. In: Class, Status, and Power, ed. R. Bendix and S.M. Lipset, Glencoe, IL: Free Press, pp. 92–129.Google Scholar
  59. Paul, D.M. and Brown, C. (2001). Testing the limits of elite influence on public opinion: An examination of sports facility referendums. Political Research Quarterly, 54:871–888.Google Scholar
  60. Perrow, C. (1991). A society of organizations. Theory and Society, 20:725–762.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Perrucci, R. and Pilisuk, M. (1970). Leaders and ruling elites: The interorganizational bases of community power. American Sociological Review, 35:1040–1056.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Peterson, P.E. (1981). City Limits. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  63. Piven, F.F. and Cloward, R. (1972). Regulating the Poor: The Functions of Public Welfare. New York: Vintage.Google Scholar
  64. Polsby, N.W. (1968). Untitled review. American Sociological Review, 33:476–477.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Priest, T.B. (1995). Elite and upper class in Philadelphia, 1975. Sociological Forum, 10:165–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Rosenzweig, R. (1998). Wizards, bureaucrats, warriors, and hackers: Writing the history of the Internet. The American Historical Review, 103:1530–1552.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Rothman, S., Nagai, A., and Lerner, R. (1996). American Elites. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  68. Roy, W.G. (1984). Review: The corporate elite dog-eat-dog or birds-of-a-feather? Contemporary Sociology, 13(2): 162–164.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Salzman, H. and Domhoff, G.W. (1983). Nonprofit organizations and the corporate community. Social Science History, 7:205–216.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Schumaker, P. and Burns, N.E. (1988). Gender cleavages and the resolution of local policy issues. American Journal of Political Science, 32:1070–1095.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Schwartz, M. (Ed.). (1987). The Structure of Power in America: The Corporate Class as a Ruling Elite. New York: Holmes and Meier.Google Scholar
  72. Scott, J. (1991). Networks of corporate power: A comparative assessment. Annual Review of Sociology, 17:181–203.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Skocpol, T. (2003). Diminished Democracy: From Membership to Management in American Civic Life. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press.Google Scholar
  74. Stone, A. (1978). Untitled review. The American Political Science Review, 72(2): 673–674.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Stone, C.N. (1976). Economic Growth and Neighborhood Discontent: System Bias in the Urban Renewal Program of Atlanta. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  76. Stone, C.N. (1981). Systemic power in community decisionmaking. American Political Science Review, 74:978–990.Google Scholar
  77. Stone, C. (1989). Regime Politics: Governing Atlanta 1946–1988. Lawrence: University of Kansas Press.Google Scholar
  78. Suttles, G.D. (1972). The Social Construction of Communities. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  79. Turk, H. (1977). Interorganizational networks in urban society: Initial perspectives and comparative research. American Sociological Review, 35:1–20.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Useem, M. (1984). The Inner Circle. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  81. Von der Muhll, G. (1977). Robert A. Dahl and the study of contemporary democracy: A review Essay. The American Political Science Review, 71(3): 1070–1096.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. Walton, J. (1966). Substance and artifact: The current status of research on community power structure. The American Journal of Sociology, 71:430–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Warner, W.L. and Lunt, P.S. (1941). The Social Life of a Modern Community. Yankee City Series Volume I. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  84. Warren, R.L. (1963). The Community in America. Chicago: Rand McNally.Google Scholar
  85. Whetten, D.A. (1981). Interorganizational relations: A review of the field. The Journal of Higher Education, 52:1–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  86. Whitt, J.A. (1982). Urban Elites and Mass Transportation: The Dialectics of Power. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Uni-versity Press.Google Scholar
  87. Zeitlin, M. (1974). Corporate ownership and control: The large corporation and the capitalist class. The American Journal of Sociology, 79:1073–1119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  88. Zweigenhaft, R.L. and Domhoff, G.W. (1998). Diversity in the Power Elite: Have Women and Minorities Reached the Top? New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rikki Abzug
    • 1
  1. 1.The New School for Social ResearchUSA

Personalised recommendations