Definitions for gerontocracyˌdʒɛr ənˈtɒk rə si, ˌdʒɪər-
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word gerontocracy
Government by elders.
government by old men
Origin: [Gr. , , an old man + to rule.]
A gerontocracy is a form of oligarchical rule in which an entity is ruled by leaders who are significantly older than most of the adult population. The ancient Greeks were among the first to believe in this idea of gerontocracies as famously stated by Plato, “it is for the elder man to rule and for the younger to submit”. These beliefs however are not unique to ancient Greece as many cultures still subscribe to this way of thinking. Often these political structures are such that political power within the ruling class accumulates with age, making the oldest the holders of the most power. Those holding the most power may not be in formal leadership positions, but often dominate those who are. In a simplified definition, a gerontocracy is simply a society where leadership is reserved for elders. The best example of this can be seen in the ancient Greek city state of Sparta which was ruled by a gerousia. A gerousia was a council made up of members who had to be at least 60 years old and served for life.
Sample Sentences & Example Usage
An important antidote to American democracy is American gerontocracy. The positions of eminence and authority in Congress are allotted in accordance with length of service, regardless of quality. Superficial observers have long criticized the United States for making a fetish of youth. This is unfair. Uniquely among modern organs of public and private administration, its national legislature rewards senility.
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"gerontocracy." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2016. Web. 7 Feb. 2016. <http://www.definitions.net/definition/gerontocracy>.