Italian jurist, politician, and political scientist. His best-known work Elementi di scienza politica 1896 (translated as The Ruling Class 1939) set out his theory of the political elite. In all societies, the majority is ruled by a minority in the upper stratum of society and, in the endless struggle for power, the membership in the elite political class is determined by natural selection. Although his theory of the elite appears to justify fascism, Mosca spurned both Mussolini and Hitler.
He was elected a deputy in the Italian parliament 1908 and became a life senator 1919. He was a professor at the University of Rome from 1923 and taught both there and at the universities of Palermo and Turin.