an/(one's) ivory tower

(redirected from their ivory towers)

an/(one's) ivory tower

A place or a social circle that is characterized by effete academic intelligence and thus is out of touch with or aloof from the realities of life. I don't put much weight in the advice of a bunch of economists living in their ivory towers who've never worked a real job in their lives. It seemed easy to solve all the world's problems when I was living in an ivory tower. Now that I'm out of college, I realize things are so much more complex than I'd imagined.
See also: ivory, tower

an ivory tower

COMMON If you say that someone is in an ivory tower, you mean that they are protected from the problems of ordinary life and are not aware of how ordinary people live. They're all out of touch — they live up in a little ivory tower, and they don't see what's going on down here. This won't happen until politicians come down from their ivory tower and learn to work in the real world of limited budgets and uncertain futures. Note: This is a translation of a French expression `tour d'ivoire', which was used by the critic Saint-Beuve to describe the way in which the writer Alfred de Vigny isolated himself from the rest of society.
See also: ivory, tower

an ˌivory ˈtower

(disapproving) a way of life in which people avoid the unpleasant realities of life: Just because I’m a writer, it doesn’t mean I live in an ivory tower. I have to earn a living like anyone else.What do professors and academics sitting in their ivory towers know about the real world?
See also: ivory, tower
References in periodicals archive ?
Summary: Lebanon's municipal elections are behind us, and what we have seen is an invitation to parties and politicians to climb down from their ivory towers and see the country for what it is.
YOU SAID: Instead of cutting front line services the local councils should concentrate on reducing the army of 'jobsworths' in their ivory towers.
He said university types needed to get out of their ivory towers and recognise problems in the community to make a difference.
While I understand cuts have to be made because of the edicts of central government, I really do think that the likes of Martin Reeves and his colleagues should leave their ivory towers occasionally to see the impact the cuts are having under the name of 'abc' (A Better Coventry) at ground level.
It is all very well for people to pontificate from their ivory towers but the reality on the streets in towns across Britain is very different.
Do the transport officials sitting in their ivory towers, and no doubt with cars at their disposal, realise what they have done to our bus services?
It is time the judges came down from their ivory towers and listened to what people want in the way of justice.
It's a ridiculous plan and it's about time the people the public elected to represent them came down from their ivory towers and into the real world.
HOW long can this madness go on, how much longer must the judiciary sit in their ivory towers and pass derisory sentences on those who continue to steal the lives of our decent citizens?
Just think, this might even force those public servants to come down out of their ivory towers and actually get in touch with the people who pay their outrageous salaries, and find out how the voters really feel about the various issues that directly impact them.
SCOTS ministers have been told to get out of their ivory towers and get in touch with real people and their problems.
The book limits itself to demanding that companies be more transparent, that they open their inner sanctums to the public and that corporate boards climb down from their ivory towers.
On being selected as one of the 100 young leaders of 2003, Forbes said, "It is a tremendous honor and reflects an appreciation of the business and policy community for academics who are willing to leave the safe-haven of their ivory towers and simplified models to confront the more complex issues in the real world.
ACADEMICS insist poor will not be priced out by rises", said your headline in Tuesday's paper, but if they really believe that, they've been in their ivory towers too long.
LOCAL and national governments sit in their ivory towers being well paid, with expenses thrown in by the taxpayers for good measure.