A socialite is a person who is known to be a part of fashionable society because of his or her regular participation in social activities and fondness for spending a significant amount of time entertaining and being entertained. Some socialites may choose to use their social skills and connections to promote and raise funds for various charitable or philanthropic activities. Socialites are usually in possession of considerable wealth, inherited or self-made, that can sustain their steady attendance at social functions. Their social movements have been published in the UK's Tatler magazine and they might be listed in features such as the Social Register of the United States.
By the mid-twentieth century, television news gave little attention to members of high society, and in the 1970s newspapers curtailed or discontinued their daily "Society" page to institute a Sunday "Style" section. In recent years, socialites have been largely neglected in the media and social prominence has come to reside with celebrities, who are more famous, have a public profile and are often accomplished at a specific profession. Socialites and celebrities were briefly united in the jet set around 1960 but in later years the former group were absorbed or displaced by the latter.
Socialites, on the other hand, have very little public recognition and are known mostly within the media and cultured society circles where they socialize. They might be featured in magazines such as Vanity Fair following an eventful or scandalous occurrence in their lives, such as the elder abuse controversy surrounding American socialite Brooke Astor or the attempted murder charges leveled against British socialite Claus von Bülow.
Celebutantes form a relatively new social category that is used to describe individuals who have the habits of young socialites, known as debutantes, but have gained the media attention that is reserved for celebrities. Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian have been prime examples of this kind of public figures.
Socialites Come Out of Hibernation for Patrick McMullan at Elaine's; Let's Pretend This Whole Wall Street Mess Never Happened!
Feb 11, 2009; CDATA[ It's been a long, cold, economically devastating winter, but at Elaine's on Tuesday night for Patrick McMullan's party...
Socialite's Plight: You Can Be Too Rich, Too Thin; Let's Hear It for the Ladies Who Lunch; Does Couture Equal Cause?
Mar 10, 2013; It is believed that Babe Paley was the source of the famous quote, "You can never be too rich or too thin."Too rich? Is there...