The Fracturing of the American Corporate Elite


Product Details

Harvard University Press
Publish Date
6.41 X 9.28 X 1.26 inches | 1.49 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

Mark S. Mizruchi is Barger Family Professor of Organizational Studies and Professor of Sociology and Business Administration at the University of Michigan.

Author's home: West Bloomfield, MI


This book will become a seminal contribution to our understanding of the nature and transformation of the U.S. corporate elite over the past century.--Richard Lachmann, University at Albany, State University of New York
A striking interpretation of our present economic and political plight. Mark Mizruchi sees many of our problems nested in the dissolution of the ruling business elite that exercised a moderating influence from World War II to the 1970s. Counterintuitive, impeccably researched, closely argued, and depressingly on target.--Charles Perrow, Yale University
Mizruchi shows that in the postwar years, corporate leaders, whatever their weaknesses, put their heads together when the going got tough and came up with political solutions. The system was not altogether democratic, but it resulted in effective problem solving, and a means of bringing the powerful together to pursue the nation's common goals. That system has fallen apart. This captivating story, told with fluidity and grace, provides a compelling explanation for today's failure of political ingenuity and compromise.--Frank Dobbin, Harvard University
Mizruchi makes a convincing case.--Andrew Hacker"New York Review of Books" (01/09/2014)
[Mizruchi] claims that business has abdicated responsibility for developing and advocating practical solutions to national, as opposed to purely sectional, interests. His view will perhaps come as a shock to those accustomed to the ideological divides of our current political landscape. Mizruchi shows how, in the past, businesses had been prepared to cooperate with both government and labor organizations in the common pursuit of national objectives.-- (03/15/2013)
According to the author, the disintegration of America's corporate leadership began in the 1980s. Since then, the principle of moderation has given way to self-interest and extremism. Mizruchi tells us to think twice about the current denigration of the country's corporate elite. In making his case, he recants many of his own youthful prejudices, seeing advantages in the vanished economic order elites once established. His line of thought is persuasive. Anti-elitists, corporate critics, and economic planners can all learn from his sound and sober revisionism.-- (03/18/2013)
Offers a compelling history of how the American corporate elite reconciled itself to the New Deal, and then, in the aftermath of World War II, signed on to a vision of America in which government played a muscular and essential role in steering the economy and underwriting the well-being of the middle class...Mizruchi's secret history of a time when corporate America believed in government and in paying taxes--and the riffs he adds to the more familiar tune of how business became more conservative--are assembled here in the service of a larger argument: This right-hand turn by the country's corporate elite has been bad for business and bad for America. Mizruchi describes a business elite that has become fragmented, irrelevant, and powerless to solve the problems--like mounting national debt, decaying infrastructure, and failing schools--that, in the long-term, will hurt the vested interests of corporate America.-- (06/01/2013)