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Marx or Mosca? An inquiry into the foundations of ideocratic regimes

Marx oder Mosca? Eine empirische Untersuchung der Fundamente ideokratischer Regime
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Best, Heinrich

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Abstract "In John Higley's and Michael Burton's taxonomy of elite settings, 'ideocratic elites' are represented by regimes of the Soviet type. These regimes based their rule on an egalitarian ideology that legitimized inequalities as temporary abnormalities. According to Marx the abolition of private ownership of the means of production would ultimately lead to a classless society. Gaetano Mosca questioned this claim and argued that families would maintain and even strengthen their function in producing and reproducing a 'ruling class' (tantamount to the elite concept) in communist regimes. The present contribution examines these claims on the basis of GDR's Central Cadres Database. Comprehensive empirical evidence is provided supporting Mosca' s claim of a persistent impact of families in the formation and reproduction of communist elites." (author's abstract)
Keywords Marx, K.; elite; elite research; theory of society; theory formation; theory; social science; sociological theory; communism; private property; class society; political regime; GDR research; historical development; reproduction; social inequality; cadre; data bank; Socialist Unity Party of Germany (GDR); post-war society; National Socialist German Workers' Party
Classification General History; General Concepts, Major Hypotheses and Major Theories in the Social Sciences; Political Process, Elections, Political Sociology, Political Culture
Method empirical; quantitative empirical; basic research; historical; theory formation
Document language English
Publication Year 2012
Page/Pages p. 73-89
Journal Historical Social Research, 37 (2012) 1
Issue topic Elite foundations of social theory and politics / Elitetheoretische Grundlagen sozialwissenschaftlicher Theoriebildung und politischer Analyse
ISSN 0172-6404
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works