Celebration of Heroes: Prestige as a Social Control System.
. . .
control factors . . . determine which social strata or
classes exist in any society. Besides force and force
threat, they are wealth and
. . . [P]restige
is the esteem, respect, or approval that is granted by an
individual or a collectivity for performances or qualities they
consider above the average."1b*
corporate activity aims at manipulating officials by
bribes, gifts, and campaign contributions, so they will
arrange for government purchases from a particular seller."1c
. . . [I]t is a condition
of their trade that embezzlers must succeed in presenting
themselves as law-abiding until they are found out.
So must all white collar criminals."1d
. . [S]ubversion
is especially tempting in an activity where there are few
gatekeepers and these few have great influence.
This is the situation in many professions."1e
. . . [A]nother type of
subversion: robbing other of deserved esteem, and defaming them.
This is often accomplished by unfairly labeling them--as criminals, juvenile delinquents, or deviants of some type."1f
. . . [T]oward the lower
classes, a higher percentage of people believe the
system is rigged. . .
" . . . [T]oward
the upper social strata, more people have actually
witnessed subversive behavior at those privileged levels
than have outsiders."1g
more responsible one is for the harmdoing, and the greater
the harm done, the more likely one is to derogate the victim.
. . If the victim is viewed as bad or incompetent in some way,
then he or she "deserves" some of the misfortune, and
little injustice was done."1h
people threaten to take power from the hands of the privileged,
the latter are more likely to hand out justice than
when no such threat is made."1i