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Secrets of Elite Soft Power

Kim, Lim, Piatov
Our Goal:
Our Goal:

Show how Elites can use Soft
Show how Elites can use Soft
Power to maintain their dominance
Power to ...
How to
How to
prevent rise of
prevent rise of
masses in
masses in
Neo-Liberal
Neo-Liberal
System?
System?

Top 1% = The Re...
Who are the Elite?

• An exceptional and/or privileged group that
wields considerable power within its sphere
of influence...
Exceptional Group
Who are the Elite?
• Fragmented Group
• Dominant Elite
– Top 1% of Wealth (owning 40% of worlds wealth)
– Control and bene...
Why Elites Matter
Elite is a Role
• Elites have been in our
society since the beginning
of time
• It is in our nature to w...
Considerable Power – Smart Power
Element of Fun: Outliers
Dominant (Structural) Elite
Outliers
Supporting Elite

• “Outliers”: Challenging the system and h...
Maintenance of Elite
• « Transformational Leaders »
– Macro-level – maintaining the whole community
dominated by elites – ...
Liminality – the rite of passage
• Concept developed by Arnold Van Gennep
“the time in which people are on the threshold
o...
Why do certain people tend to vote for elites against
their interests?
•

Identity Voting
– Reagan and his blue collar sup...
Soft Power Strategies

• Example of:
Personal Responsibility
= Elite Manipulation

Charlton Heston : :Bloodline of Freedom...
Micro-Level Strategies
• 2 Strategies that keep the masses embracing
inequalities and accepting “rules of the game”
1
Personal Responsibility

• Let the professionals
Soft Power Strategy
Idea of
Personal
Responsibility
&
Freedom
2 Functions

Brilliant!
Micro-Level Strategies
2

•
•
•

Perpetuate belief that making it to the top is easy
Abide by Elite’s rules
Enforce rules ...
Case Studies:
Illusion of Equality
“Anyone can make it!”
• Start-up: “Facebook” & Mark Zuckerberg
(always elitist oriented...
Case Studies:
Cementing the Glass Floor
•
•
•

Singers: Rappers and Pop-singers e.g.
“Jenny from the Block”
Governments: C...
Power Relationship?
Hard
Hard
Power
Power

Soft
Power

Hard
Hard
Power
Power

Soft
Power

Does a decrease in
HP Require an...
Power Relationship?
• These Regimes use vast HP
(repression) AND SP (Propaganda) to
maintain Elite Position (domestic)

• ...
Smart Soft Power
• As society evolves to knowledge economy
• Elites need more sophisticated tool of
manipulation
• Smart S...
Soft Power Presentation
Soft Power Presentation
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Soft Power Presentation

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Soft Power Presentation

  1. 1. Secrets of Elite Soft Power Kim, Lim, Piatov
  2. 2. Our Goal: Our Goal: Show how Elites can use Soft Show how Elites can use Soft Power to maintain their dominance Power to maintain their dominance
  3. 3. How to How to prevent rise of prevent rise of masses in masses in Neo-Liberal Neo-Liberal System? System? Top 1% = The Real Elite
  4. 4. Who are the Elite? • An exceptional and/or privileged group that wields considerable power within its sphere of influence.
  5. 5. Exceptional Group
  6. 6. Who are the Elite? • Fragmented Group • Dominant Elite – Top 1% of Wealth (owning 40% of worlds wealth) – Control and benefit most from structure • Functional Elite • Outlying Elite Dominant Elite Functional Elite Elites Masses Outlying Elite
  7. 7. Why Elites Matter Elite is a Role • Elites have been in our society since the beginning of time • It is in our nature to want to have leaders • Elites have the best interest of society at heart Elite is a Right • Every society needs elites to maintain order – Wealth is compensation for creating good living conditions (see failure of Tsarist Elites 1917) • Elites are the enlightened • Role of Elites is to “run” bastions of power to preserve and enhance their socio-economic position
  8. 8. Considerable Power – Smart Power
  9. 9. Element of Fun: Outliers Dominant (Structural) Elite Outliers Supporting Elite • “Outliers”: Challenging the system and hierarchy • The Outliers = The Outcasts • Noam Chomsky • Ha-Joon Chang
  10. 10. Maintenance of Elite • « Transformational Leaders » – Macro-level – maintaining the whole community dominated by elites – identity voting • « Transactional Leaders » – Micro-level – from ‘one commoner’ to ‘the elite’ – rite of passage Adapted from Joseph Nye’s “The Powers to Lead”
  11. 11. Liminality – the rite of passage • Concept developed by Arnold Van Gennep “the time in which people are on the threshold of entering a new phase in their life, having left the previous one behind” • Separation  Transition  Reincorporation From one ‘imgined community’ to another...
  12. 12. Why do certain people tend to vote for elites against their interests? • Identity Voting – Reagan and his blue collar supporters – Health Care in the U.S. – War in Iraq • • Benedict Anderson: Imagined Communities Victor Turner: Communitas
  13. 13. Soft Power Strategies • Example of: Personal Responsibility = Elite Manipulation Charlton Heston : :Bloodline of Freedom Charlton Heston Bloodline of Freedom Individual Responsibility Individual Responsibility
  14. 14. Micro-Level Strategies • 2 Strategies that keep the masses embracing inequalities and accepting “rules of the game” 1
  15. 15. Personal Responsibility • Let the professionals
  16. 16. Soft Power Strategy Idea of Personal Responsibility & Freedom 2 Functions Brilliant!
  17. 17. Micro-Level Strategies 2 • • • Perpetuate belief that making it to the top is easy Abide by Elite’s rules Enforce rules of the top group
  18. 18. Case Studies: Illusion of Equality “Anyone can make it!” • Start-up: “Facebook” & Mark Zuckerberg (always elitist oriented) Youngest billionaire in the world • Start-up: “Google” begun by Russian Immigrants • Competition: “American Idol”
  19. 19. Case Studies: Cementing the Glass Floor • • • Singers: Rappers and Pop-singers e.g. “Jenny from the Block” Governments: China’s internet censorship Royal Wedding: Prince William & a “Commoner”
  20. 20. Power Relationship? Hard Hard Power Power Soft Power Hard Hard Power Power Soft Power Does a decrease in HP Require an Increase in SP? Or can a reduction in both be sufficient for Elites to control society?
  21. 21. Power Relationship? • These Regimes use vast HP (repression) AND SP (Propaganda) to maintain Elite Position (domestic) • While US Uses less of both • US = “Smart Soft Power” Hard Hard Power Power Soft Power Smart Smart Power? Power?
  22. 22. Smart Soft Power • As society evolves to knowledge economy • Elites need more sophisticated tool of manipulation • Smart Soft Power uses subtle Transforming strategies combined with less Hard Power: – Identity Voting – Individual Responsibility & Freedom – False Hope

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