By Dr Doris Ruth Eikhof, School of Management
Dr Doris Ruth Eikhof, University of Leicester School of Management dicusses the findings from the lastest report stating that the UK is ‘deeply elitist’.
Upper class elites rule the UK, holding key positions in politics, business, law, media, education and arts and culture. A report by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission released this week documented that what the country does and thinks is determined by those educated in private schools and Oxbridge, an ‘old boys network’ that working class men and women find it difficult to break into. Shocking, yes, but hardly new and hardly surprising. As Niall MacKenzie of Strathclyde Business School commented, ‘in other news, water has been discovered to be wet.’ Half a century of initiatives to broaden access to education, arts and culture, and thus jobs and careers, have aimed to reduce elitism in the UK. Some of those initiatives even make extremely successful TV viewing: Channel 4’s ‘Educating Yorkshire’, for instance, made the nation’s heart go out to youngsters struggling for a decent start in life. Identification with the working class is so de rigeur in Britain that the middle classes especially do not dare speak their own name.