¹ 3 - 2000
Gaman-Golutvina O.V.

Defining the Basic Notions of the Elites Theory

Elitology is an enormously popular, if relatively new domain of political science in Russia. One of the leading Russian specialists active in this sphere of research has, in the present article, set herself the task to examine and analyze the apparatus terminologicus of this discipline. There’s just one thing specialists nowadays agree about: they presume it is a contingent of persons singled out as minions of fortune that should be called elite. But elitologists differ in opinion as to what should be considered criterion of this status of being marked off by fortune as elite: nobleness of origin, wealth, or natural endowments. A challenging problem thus facing elitology consists, in paricular, in the need to investigate the ways and channels through which a certain position in achieved within a social group, or (to put it more specifically) to clear up the mechanisms of persons’ being selected for the elite, of the so-called elite recruitment. The author points to dissimilarity of elite recruitment in different countries, including different countries within the Western world.