Anti-elitism  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Anti-elitism is a term used to describe attitudes of disregard, resentment, or in extreme cases hate for those in power. In its mild form it is called love of the nobrow.

Anti-elitists would often describe the government, corporations or ruling class as either corrupt or ignoring the needs of the people. They often seek either to replace wealthy or privileged members of society, or even to eliminate excess wealth or privilege altogether. Anti-elitism is a common theme throughout history, from socio-politics to literary contributions and philosophies.

The term "elitism" or the title "elitist" can be used pejoratively to characterize practices which discriminate on the basis of ability or attributes. In politics, anti-elitism can manifest itself as socialism or populism. Extreme anti-elitism may take the form of communism or anarchism.

Social and political movements

Those who find themselves oppressed by their ruling body often hold disdain towards the government or existing social order for various injustices. Others may hold envy for those in power, or even wish for said power to not exist. Depending upon the extent of perceived injustices, as well as the tolerance of the people to accept their conditions, anti-elitism may erupt into mass actions such as, protest, rebellion, revolution, or anomie.

Philosophy and literature

Although not necessarily attacking those of power, the following authors often express many of the fundamental viewpoints held by anti-elitists. Transcendentalism and Communism are common themes in their beliefs, though it must be stressed that anti-elitism does not require either. As these were all men of letters, it should also be obvious that they did not subscribe to anti-intellectualism. Some of their followers did do so, specifically those of Marx and, most disastrously the Khmer Rouge.

See also



Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Anti-elitism" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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