new class


Also found in: Wikipedia.

new class

the concept, first formulated by the Yugoslavian dissident writer Milovan Djilas in 1957, that eastern European societies had not succeeded in overthrowing class rule and were in fact dominated by a new dominant class of party bureaucrats.

More recently GOULDNER (1979) has generalized the notion, suggesting that, despite Marx's assumptions, the underclass in any revolution never come to power, nor do they seem likely to do so in future. Gouldner identifies five theories of the forms in which the ‘new class’ appears within modern societies:

  1. a new class of‘benign democrats’ and managers, e.g. the theories of GALBRAITH, BELL, and of Berle and Means (1932);
  2. the new class as a ‘master class’, which is simply a further ‘moment in a long-continuing circulation of historical élites’, and still exploitative (e.g. Bakunin's view);
  3. the new class as ‘old class ally’, in which the new class are seen as ‘dedicated professionals’ who uplift the old moneyed class to a new ‘collectivity-oriented’ view (e.g. PARSONS);
  4. the new class as the ‘servants of power’, in which the moneyed or capitalist class retains power much as it always did (e.g. CHOMSKY, 1969, and Zeitlin, 1977);
  5. the new class as a ‘flawed universal class’ (Gouldner's own view); that the new class remains ‘self-seeking’ and out to control its own work situation, but is ‘the best card that history has presently given us to play’.

Gouldner suggests that the new class in this fifth sense is growing, and is more powerful and independent than suggested by Chomsky but less powerful than suggested by Galbraith.

References in classic literature ?
If such a creature were, by its own process of metabolism, to change much of its bulk for intellectual growth, we should at once arrive at a new class of creature--more dangerous, perhaps, than the world has ever had any experience of--a force which can think, which has no soul and no morals, and therefore no acceptance of responsibility.
I think that some day the bishops must get together and see about breeding up a new class of curates, who don't take supper, no matter how hard they may be pressed to, and who will know when girls are tired.
If they provoke anger in the least favored class, and the excluded majority revenge themselves on the excluding minority by the strong hand and kill them, at once a new class finds itself at the top, as certainly as cream rises in a bowl of milk: and if the people should destroy class after class, until two men only were left, one of these would be the leader and would be involuntarily served and copied by the other.
Eurand, a specialty pharmaceutical company, has signed research agreements with the University of Milan (Italy) and the University of Sassari (Italy) to evaluate a new class of analgesic compounds.
The complementary nature of the recent findings, Lummen says, hints strongly "that we are on the right track" toward a safe new class of pesticides.
The Hutchinson Metro Center, the first new Class A office building to be built in the Bronx in more than a decade, continues its winning streak with the announcement of three new leases totaling 28,000 square feet.
The team conducted a comprehensive series of biologic and biochemical experiments to discover and characterize the new class, as recently reported in the journal Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.
And while researchers are on the verge of developing a whole new class of anti-HIV drugs, actual production is years away.
In the recapitalization, some shareholders would receive new class B stock, and other shareholders, a combination of new class B stock and new class A stock.
The most important of the popular expressions menaced by the New Class, of course, is the free and unregulated market, but issues of taste run a close second, and for truly conservative critics, the two are always linked: The New Class's snobbish disdain for John Wayne, Walt Disney, and Norman Rockwell is identical to their impulse to regulate, their sense that they know better than The People/The Market.
Findings suggest HE3286, an oral synthetic hormone, acts through a new mechanism of action and represents a potentially new class of insulin sensitizers for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
PA-457 is the first in a new class of HIV drugs called Maturation Inhibitors, which have a mechanism of action that differs from those of approved HIV drugs.