The Rise of the Meritocracy

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Transaction Publishers, Dec 31, 2011 - Social Science - 180 pages
6 Reviews

Michael Young has christened the oligarchy of the future “Meritocracy.” Indeed, the word is now part of the English language. It would appear that the formula: IQ+Effort=Merit may well constitute the basic belief of the ruling class in the twenty-first century. Projecting himself into the year 2034, the author of this sociological satire shows how present decisions and practices may remold our society.

It is widespread knowledge that it is insufficient to be somebody's nephew to obtain a responsible post in business, government, teaching, or science. Experts in education and selection apply scientific principles to sift out the leaders of tomorrow. You need intelligence rating, qualification, experience, application, and a certain caliber to achieve status. In a word, one must show merit to advance in the new society of tomorrow.

In a new opening essay, Young reflects on the reception of his work, and its production, in a candid and lively way. Many of the critical ambiguities surrounding its original publication are now clarified and resolved. What we have is what the Guardian of London called “A brilliant essay.” and what Time and Tide described as “a fountain gush of new ideas. Its wit and style make it compulsively enjoyable reading from cover to cover.”


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Review: The Rise of the Meritocracy

User Review  - Josip Serdarevic - Goodreads

An intensely interesting read. It's intended as satire but at times that doesn't come across. Written in 1958, the book pretends to be written as if it were 2034. It's an illuminating examination of ... Read full review

Review: The Rise of the Meritocracy

User Review  - Jarry - Goodreads

it is interesting for seeing the pointvieus of persons who defend this tendence. otherwise its contenu is out of time and ridiculous. Read full review

Selected pages


Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three
Chapter Four
Part Two
Chapter Five
Chapter Six
Chapter Seven
Chapter Eight

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About the author (2011)

Michael F.D. Young studied at the universities of Cambridge and Essex and the former Regent Polytechnic. He is Senior Lecturer in Sociology of Education at the University of London Institute of Education, and was previously Head of Science at the London Nautical School.

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