Overview

The Meritocracy Myth challenges the widely held American belief in meritocracy—that people get out of the system what they put into it based on individual merit. The third edition has been revised and streamlined, with fresh examples and updated statistical information throughout. Chapters eight and nine have been combined into a comprehensive chapter about discrimination as a non-merit barrier to upward mobility. The book also features a new ...
See more details below
The Meritocracy Myth

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook - Third Edition)
$17.99
BN.com price
(Save 43%)$31.99 List Price

Overview

The Meritocracy Myth challenges the widely held American belief in meritocracy—that people get out of the system what they put into it based on individual merit. The third edition has been revised and streamlined, with fresh examples and updated statistical information throughout. Chapters eight and nine have been combined into a comprehensive chapter about discrimination as a non-merit barrier to upward mobility. The book also features a new section on “The Great Recession.”

The Meritocracy Myth examines talent, attitude, work ethic, and character as elements of merit, and evaluates the effect of non-merit factors such as social status, race, heritage, and wealth on meritocracy. A compelling book on an often-overlooked topic, The Meritocracy Myth has become a classroom classic to introduce students to this provocative topic.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

CHOICE
Praise for the First Edition:

This well-written and researched book on a neglected topic is a must-read. Essential.

Choice
This well-written and researched book on a neglected topic is a must-read. Essential.
Ronald C. Wimberley
Every sociology student should read this clear and compelling book, and their instructors should too! The Meritocracy Myth reminds many of us why we became interested in sociology in the first place. And I suspect that many sociology students will soon find the same.
Beth Davison
The Meritocracy Myth exposes the deceptive American rhetoric that hard work, talent and virtue are all that is necessary to make it to the top. With inequalities at the core of sociology, The Meritocracy Myth makes a valuable contribution to the field by closely examining the contributing mechanisms that perpetuate class disparities. For sociology students, reading The Meritocracy Myth is a great application of important sociological concepts and theories to explain how all of our lives are influenced by socio-economic class arrangements. The third edition is as relevant as ever in highlighting the importance of cultural myths that justify the exceedingly inequitable distribution of wealth in our modern society.
Judi Kessler
The Meritocracy Myth deconstructs the discourse around the American Dream in a manner that is accessible by, and doesn't talk down to, the typical undergrad. Exceptionally well-written.
Paul Durrenberger
In the land of opportunity, hard work and playing by the rules pays off and merit is rewarded by success.The wide-awake sociology of McNamee and Miller shines the bright light of reality on the myth to show that birth counts more and education less, and while luck is important, no one can count on it and those who play by the rules often benefit least.
Inc. Book News
McNamee and Miller explain that meritocracy is a myth and that there is no substitute for starting in advance of others in life, and that being female or a minority definitely makes you start behind. In this third edition, they lay out proof while streamlining their narrative. They examine the origins of the American dream, analyze the case for a merit-based system, and discuss the issue of inheritance (the "silver spoon"). They then go into the truth: social and cultural capital, education and mobility, and the luck factor count more than simply hard work. They describe other factors, such as the decline of self-employment and the ascent of corporations, racism, and sexism. They close with the observation that meritocracy is growing more and more into being a myth as inequality grows in the twenty-first century.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781442219830
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/18/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Third Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 264
  • Sales rank: 572,462
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Stephen J. McNamee is interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He is the recipient of the University of North Carolina Wilmington Distinguished Faculty Scholar Award, The University of North Carolina Wilmington Distinguished Teaching Professorship Award, and the University of North Carolina System Board of Governors Teaching Award.

Robert K. Miller Jr. is professor emeritus of sociology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He has published widely on the topic of social and economic inequality and is coeditor with Stephen J. McNamee of Inheritance and Wealth in America.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
 1  The American Dream: Origins and Prospects
 2  On Being Made of the Right Stuff: The Case for Merit
 3  The Silver Spoon: Inheritance and the Staggered Start
 4  It’s Not What You Know but . . . : Social and Cultural Capital
 5  Making the Grade: Education and Mobility
 6  Being in the Right Place at the Right Time: The Luck Factor
 7  I Did It My Way: The Decline of Self-employment and the Ascent of Corporations
 8  An Unlevel Playing Field: Racism, Sexism, and other Isms
 9  Growing Inequality in the Twenty-first Century

Index
About the Authors
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)