Pluralism vs. Elitism

Historically, pluralism is associated with democracy, a system of checks and balances of power that forge a consensus of the general interest that dictates government policy. In contrast, the elitism or elitist perspective of government maintains that a select group of rich and powerful individuals or groups dictate public policy that favors their own interests. Wasserman (2006) argues that a more evolved viewpoint of American government and politics blends the two approaches, "The pluralist and elite approaches are two ends of a range of ideas about American politics" (p. 264). Basically two opposite ends of the political spectrum, neither elitism nor pluralism is an accurate lens through which to describe American politics, which is typically some combination of the two stances.

The pluralist perspective of American politics maintains that "politics in America is democratic, with widespread participation in decision to which most people agree" (Wasserman, 2006, p. 264). In contrast, the elitist perspective of politics maintains that American politics is "dominated by an elite that controls and manipulates the rest of us in its own interest" (Wasserman, 2006, p. 264-65). In reality, American politics is most clearly viewed as a combination of these two perspectives. While some view the elitist approach as harmful to the public interest, the pluralist approach is not always beneficial either. This is because the sum of various



Related Essays

The Original American Constitution & Elitism .... From the elitist perspective, justice for non-elites is having their decisions made for them by the "chosen" few, those with a wisdom, patriotism and love of .... (1637 7 )

Impact of Renaissance on Italy .... Instead, what we generally are given are the elitist-oriented portraits of the Renaissance from the privileged perspective of the rich and powerful few. .... (1464 6 )

Black Feminism As A Human Culture Introductio .... Moynihan's perspective was shared by many black men including Black Nationalists who .... proposed in this book is to "interrupt/disrupt the elitist, sexist and .... (2336 9 )

Making A Living .... In this way Gornick's perspective seems almost as elitist and unsympathetic as the individuals Ehrenreich describes who refuse to provide decent opportunities .... (1768 7 )

Education System in Iran .... Ignas reports that from the historical perspective, American schools were not democratic but rather elitist and church-affiliated. .... (1852 7 )

Category: Government - P
Common Topics
Click Here to Get Instant Access to over 32,000 Professionally Written Papers!!!
Join Now  
Saved Papers  
Save your essays here so you can locate them quickly!
"Your site was very helpful and gave me the details I needed in order to complete my essay!!!"
Mike F.
"This site is an excellent vehicle for quick referrences. Thanks a bunch!"
Carla T.
"Thank you for making such a high quality site! Your papers are the best I have seen around"
Debbie B.
"Great site, I got a lot of new ideas I would have never thought of before."
Nate A.
"I love this site!!!"
Marie H.
Copyright © 2007 - 2014 Lots of Essays. All Rights Reserved. DMCA