Who Rules America?  By G. William Domhoff, University of California at Santa Cruz

Who Rules America? (8th edition)

Table of Contents

Introduction: Setting the Stage for What Follows

  • Keeping Power and Politics in Perspective
  • A Guide to What Follows

Chapter 1: Concepts, Definitions, and Power Indicators

  • Power Is a Relationship: The Social Science View of Power
  • The Social Psychology of Being Powerful Or Powerless
  • The Four Major Power Networks
  • Cultures of Resistance, Cultures of Resentment
  • There Have Been No Conspiracies to Take Over the Government
  • What Does "Power" Mean in American Culture?
  • Social Classes, According to Social Scientists
  • How Do Americans Perceive Social Classes?
  • Class, Caste, and Colorism in the United States
  • Three Power Indicators
  • Conclusion

Chapter 2: The Corporate Community

  • Introduction
  • The General Contours of the Corporate Community
  • The Unexpected Origins of the Corporate Community
  • The Board of Directors
  • Two Important Business Sectors in the Corporate Community
  • The Director Network as a Leadership Group
  • The Corporate Lawyers
  • From Small Farms to Agri-Businesses in the Corporate Community
  • Small Businesses and Their Reliance on the Corporate Community
  • Local Businesses Form Growth Coalitions
  • Structural Power and Its Limits

Chapter 3: The Corporate Community and the Upper Class

  • Introduction
  • Is There an American Upper Class?
  • Prepping for Power
  • Social Clubs
  • Women's Roles as a Window Into the Upper Class
  • Continuity and Upward Mobility
  • The Upper Class and Corporate Control
  • The Social-Class Backgrounds of Corporate Executives
  • The Assimilation of Rising Corporate Executives
  • Drop-Outs, Failures, and Change Agents
  • Conclusion: Common Economic Interests and Social Bonds

Chapter 4: The Corporate Rich, The Policy-Planning Network, and the Power Elite

  • Introduction
  • The Power Elite: An Institutionalized Leadership Group
  • Foundations
  • Think Tanks
  • Policy-Discussion Groups
  • The Creation of New Government Agencies
  • The Rise of Ultraconservative Foundations & Think Tanks
  • The Mixed Role of Universities in American Power Conflicts
  • Conclusion: The Policy-Planning Network in Perspective

Chapter 5: The Role of Public Opinion

  • Introduction and Overview
  • An Overview of the Opinion-Shaping Network
  • The American Creed and Blaming the Victims
  • Benign Public Relations
  • Shaping Public Opinion Through Educational Nonprofits
  • Manufacturing Crises and Spreading Doubt
  • Dark Public Relations: Attempts to "Enforce" Public Opinion
  • The Secondary Role of the Media
  • When Public Opinion Can and Cannot Be Ignored
  • Conclusion

Chapter 6: Parties and Elections

  • Electoral Rules as Containment Strategies
  • Electoral Containment and Voter Suppression in America
  • How Elections Nonetheless Matter
  • Why Are There Only Two Major Parties?
  • The Two Political Parties: The In-Group Against the Out-Groups
  • The Republican and Democratic Coalitions From 1878 to 1994
  • Party Primaries Bring Wild Cards Into Elections
  • The Big, Not Determinative, Role of Campaign Finance
  • Other Corporate Support for Candidates
  • The Liberal-Labor Alliance in Electoral Politics
  • Persuadable Centrists and Moderates Usually Decide Elections
  • The Results of the Candidate-Selection Process
  • But There's Still Uncertainty

Chapter 7: How the Power Elite Dominate Government

  • Introduction
  • The Special-Interest Process
  • The Policy- Making Process
  • Appointees to Government
  • The Trump and Biden Cabinets: A Study in Contrasts
  • The Supreme Court: A Bastion of Corporate Dominance
  • The Liberal-Labor Alliance and Congress
  • The Limits of Corporate Domination
  • Conclusion

Chapter 8: Examining the American Power Structure in a Wider Perspective

  • Why Are the Corporate Rich So Powerful?
  • The Transformation of the American Power Structure
  • African Americans Squeeze Out Conservative Southern Democrats
  • Power and Social Change
  • The What Ifs and What's Nexts



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