In much modern writing–certainly in the social and educational sciences – elitism has not exactly had rave notices. The very idea of elite groups or organizations, whether self or other identified, arouses suspicions of superiority, authority and power which may be used to the detriment of others. It connotes something that is inimical to the public good rather than that which is desirable or beneficial. The issue of class and elites was very much brought to the fore in the writings of the American social analyst, C. Wright Mills. Though sometimes thought of as a neo-Marxist, Mills, influenced by Max Weber, argued that the expression 'ruling class' was really the conflation of two different levels of analysis, rule being a political concept, and class an economic concept. The criteria for élite status vary from society to society, and sometimes, over time, within the same society. To the modern mind, these qualifications for elite status may seem unusual – even bizarre.