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Elementi di Scienza Politica [The Ruling Class]

Elementi di Scienza Politica [The Ruling Class]

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Elementi di Scienza Politica [The Ruling Class] - 1896

by Mosca, Gaetano

  • Used
  • Hardcover
  • first
Used - Octavo. Contemporary half-leather binding with purple percaline boards intricately embossed with a floral motif. Boards worn and


Roma: Fratelli Bocca, 1896. First edition (in Italian). Octavo. Contemporary half-leather binding with purple percaline boards intricately embossed with a floral motif. Boards worn and scuffed, particularly along spine, with wear to joints; toning to leaves with spotting and minor staining throughout; one-centimeter closed tear to front free endpaper; pencil annotation to title verso page; neat colored pencil marks to several leaves, else a superb copy of this rare and foundational work of elite theory.. Scarce first edition of Gaetano Mosca's (1858-1941) definitive work of elite theory and the doctrine of the ruling class. Mosca earned his law degree from the University of Palermo in 1881 and thereafter taught law in a variety of Italian institutions, including at the University of Turin and the University of Rome. In 1909 Mosca was elected to the Chamber of Deputies of Italy, a parliamentary position that he held until 1919, the year he was nominated a life senator of the Kingdom of Italy. In 1925 Mosca signed on to the "Manifesto of Anti-Fascist Intellectuals" written by Benedetto Croce in response to the "Manifesto of Fascist Intellectuals" by Giovani Gentile. Mosca opposed Fascist efforts to curtail political and social rights, and in his later years he took to the floor of parliament to denounce Fascist bills and advocate for civil liberties and parliamentary government. Mosca became renowned for his works on political theory, and Elementi di Scienza Politica is widely considered his masterpiece. Originally published by Fratelli Bocca in Italian in 1896, the book was later translated into English under the title The Ruling Class and was quickly recognized as a seminal work of elite theory in the tradition of Machiavelli. Mosca sought in his scholarship to develop a universal theory of political society, and his analysis of the ruling political class was a foundational component of this theory. In a manner similar to Vilfredo Pareto and Robert Michels-his fellow co-founders of the Italian school of elitism-Mosca believed that all societies are comprised of the ruled, on the one hand, and the elites who rule them, on the other. Mosca attributes the greater power potential of elites to their superior organizational skills, which are valued in complex, bureaucratic societies. Unlike other elite theorists, however, Mosca did not believe elitism to be hereditary or fixed; rather, liberal social orders may permit a cycling of elites from various social positions. Mosca's Elementi di Scienza Politica would profoundly impact future sociologists, political scientists, economists, and elite theorists, including James Burnham, whose influential 1941 book The Managerial Revolution: What is Happening in the World, was heavily influenced by Mosca's thought, and whose 1943 book, The Machiavellians: Defenders of Freedom, evaluates the scholarship of Mosca and his fellow Italian elite theorists Vilfredo Pareto and Robert Michels. First editions of Mosca's Elementi di Scienza Politica are exceedingly scarce.
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  • Title Elementi di Scienza Politica [The Ruling Class]
  • Author Mosca, Gaetano
  • Edition First edition (in Italian)
  • Condition Used - Octavo. Contemporary half-leather binding with purple percaline boards intricately embossed with a floral motif. Boards worn and
  • Publisher Fratelli Bocca, Roma
  • Date 1896
  • Bookseller's Inventory # 11

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