Introducing C Wright Mills
SOC203 – 20/09/2012
- From Marx He understood that society was based in class struggle, but he
was also inspired by weber and interested in bureaucracy.
- White collar: physical power, legitimate authority, manipulation
- Main form of power in 20 century is ideological manipulative
- Interested in role of media – as a super structure
- Mills was the first to claim that media is a huge power that contributes to
2 phenomenon from beaucracy:
- White collar alienation: alienation of factory working
- Middle class workers have little intellectual stimulation and are alienated
from other people.
- Main character in Fight Club, he goes crazy
- Over consumption of media, feeds alienation
- Status panic: means to lose our sense of identity
The Power of Elite:
- He thought like marx that society was divided into 2 groups, those who
control resources and those who don’t.
- Marx was interested in how power was becoming increasingly
concentrated in the hands of the few.
- Not it is possible for a few people to destroy the entire world, wasn’t the
way it always was before.
- Power elite: composed of three circles of power:
- 1. Government/political power
- 2. Military/ physical power - 3. Corporations/economic power
- Middle: social institutions, celebrity power, media, education,
- Basically Mills had a pyramid for power:
1.gov. political power
like media, institutions,
The Masses (people,the public)
- Power elite different than marxs ruling class (added military and political
They are not challenged by bureaucracies, institutions, special interest
- Economic, political, military power are intertwined, still in Canada today
- Power is transferable
JOHN PORTER: Porter wrote the book " The vertical mosaic" and in it he looked exclusively at
the distribution of power in Canada.
There are 3 images of Canada in the Vertical Mosiac:
1. Class is the base of Canadian society
2. Canada is a vertical mosaic not a melting pot like the U.S. However, the