Giorgio Volpe

«The Élites Vogue»: The Reception of Michels, Mosca and Pareto in the United States

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract


The importance that Italian Elite theory has had for the development of the social sciences is a well established fact. Equally well known is that the centre of political studies shifted rapidly from Europe to the United States, which gradually built a cultural hegemony in this area of study. This essay aims to understand the relationship between the Italian eliti sts and American academia in the 1920s-1930s, reconstructing dynamics, places and characters, in order to show Italian elitism's important role for the renewal of political science in the United States, and for political studies in general. The main point of the article is that American scholars examined Elitism in order to understand Fascism and analysed issues (propaganda, patriotism, controlling the masses, crowd psychology) that they regarded as particularly important for the United States and its technocratic development.

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