We are all part of the masses and Not part of the masses based on our behavior at any given point in time. Anytime we perform an action or think a thought common to a majority of the citizenry we are part of the masses. Everytime we do something that is done by less than 10% of the population we are oddballs and outliers. We are manipulable in either case or not manipulable in either case. Sousa is still played by US military and school marching bands just as some Germans sing hymns in church written by Hans Sachs. Even in an Orwellian dictatorship that would still be the case although the range of behavior and thought would be greatly restricted.
The reason why classical music is declining in the West and in India is simply that the elites or tastemakers there are not going to classical concerts in any numbers nor do they publically extol it. Richard Nixon believe it or not was the last President to go to a regular classical concert outside the WH. In a democracy the LCD is dominant and the elites are simply the embodiment of the LCD or they are deeply unpopular and rejected.as Mencken correctly observed:
As democracy is perfected, the office of president
represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On
some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their
heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a
Or as Nietzsche said: Teaching the masses to read is the death of letters.
But this is not because any individual is the masses personified but simply their collective LCD is low in anything. And we all are part of those masses more or less.
In other words, excellence is undemocratic.
And the masses are not people within an ethnic group.