Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
You can't say that "elite" is just another name for "tribe".

You could, in that the elite run the tribe and define its guiding priciples even, or perhaps especially, if those require the exlcusion of most of the tribe from the elite.

It's the classic old-school British (and American) colonisation technique. You establish an elite by finding those amongst the already rich who most want to abandon their own culture and embrace your mores and reward them liberally. This encourages all others at every level of society into believing that advancement requires behaving like/adopting the attitudes of the elite, however little it actually rewards them.

This works for any ordinary societies that finds itself colonised by an elite. Once British society was dominated by an upper class whose wealth was derived from ancient rights and privileges of class. So proper behaviour invovled having a posh accent and decent manners. Now our elites are brokers and traders who are unashamedly brash, ill-mannered and drunken. We adapt accordingly.

Also, the introductory chapter of "The irony of Democracy", available here, describes some of the process quite well.


keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 09:19:45 AM EST
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