This book is a tribute to Enzo Mingione and his contribution to the fields of sociology and urban studies on the occasion of his retirement. It touches upon the processes of transformation of cities to the informal economy, from the Fordist crisis to the rediscovery of poverty, from the welfare state and welfare policies to migration and the transformation of work. These themes constitute the analytical building blocks of this book on the transitions that Western capitalist societies are undergoing. The book focuses on social foundations of Western capitalism, explaining how socio-economic and institutional complementarities that characterised postwar capitalism created relatively integrated socio-economic regimes, It has five thematic sections reflecting five areas of capitalism, the search interests of Enzo Mingione. The first discusses the transformations of global capitalism, addressing how capitalism works and how it changes. The second provides insights into the mechanisms of re-embedding, in particular how welfare policies are part of a societal reaction to capitalism's disruptive dynamic. The third addresses some main challenges that citizenship systems established in the post-war period have had to face, from the spread of new employment regimes to new migratory flows. The fourth addresses cities and their transformation and the final section addresses poverty and its spatial dimension as a crucial lens through which to understand the differentiated impact of the processes of change in Western capitalist societies, both in socio-economic and spatial terms.
Over more than thirty years of reform and opening, the Chinese Communist Party has pursued the gradual marketization of China’s economy alongside the preservation of a resiliently authoritarian political system, defying long-standing predictions that ‘transition’ to a market economy would catalyse deeper political transformation. In an era of deepening synergy between authoritarian politics and finance capitalism, Communists constructing capitalism offers a novel and important perspective on this central dilemma of contemporary Chinese development. This book challenges existing state–market paradigms of political economy and reveals the Eurocentric assumptions of liberal scepticism towards Chinese authoritarian resilience. It works with an alternative conceptual vocabulary for analysing the political economy of financial development as both the management and exploitation of socio-economic uncertainty. Drawing upon extensive fieldwork and over sixty interviews with policymakers, bankers, and former party and state officials, the book delves into the role of China’s state-owned banking system since 1989. It shows how political control over capital has been central to China’s experience of capitalist development, enabling both rapid economic growth whilst preserving macroeconomic and political stability. Communists constructing capitalism will be of academic interest to scholars and graduate students in the fields of Chinese studies, social studies of finance, and international and comparative political economy. Beyond academia, it will be essential reading for anyone interested in the evolution of Chinese capitalism and its implications for an increasingly central issue in contemporary global politics: the financial foundations of illiberal capitalism.
Politico-economies of Slavery, Indentured Labour and Debt
Coercive Capitalisms: Politico-economies
of Slavery, Indentured Labour and
This chapter develops the short section appearing in MEAB, and asks
the question: why is slavery centrally important for an understanding
of capitalist political economies?1 Much attention has been paid to
the exploitative nature of capitalism, and the consequently systemic
and extreme inequalities of monetary wealth, to which we have added
inequalities in rights to public goods and resources. In the analysis so
far, these inequalities are seen to be inherently gendered
Ethnographies of labour at sea must examine the experience of that labour, rather than contemplate the commodities that are produced, or resort to trite metaphors about watery 'flow' and 'immersion' This book takes up a labour-centred Marxist approach to human-environment relations, place and language, human-machine relations, technique and technology, political economy and violence. It explores how fishers make the sea productive through their labour, using technologies ranging from wooden boats to digital GPS plotters to create familiar places in a seemingly hostile environment. While most analyses of navigation assume that its purpose is orientation, virtually all navigation devices are used in techniques to solve the problem of relative position. Fishers frequently have to make impossible choices between safe seamanship and staying afloat economically, and the book describes the human impact of the high rate of deaths in the fishing industry. The lives of fishermen are affected by capitalist forces in the markets they sell to, forces that shape even the relations between fishers on the same boat. The book also discusses techniques people used to extend their bodies and perceptual abilities, the importance of controlling and delicately manipulating these extensions and the caring relationships of maintenance boats and machines required. A 'new anthropology of labour' and a 'decolonised anthropology dispenses with the disciplinary emphasis on the "outside" of capitalism and encompasses the dynamism and interconnections of global society'.
Ancient markets, modern
capitalism: China and the problem
[N]one of the standard models of economic and political theory can
explain China. … China still does not have well-specified property
rights, town-village enterprises hardly resemble the standard firm
of economics, and it remains to this day a communist dictatorship.
Douglass North (2005)
It is merely in the night of our ignorance that all alien shapes take
on the same hue.
Perry Anderson (1974)
If, as I argue in this book, it is necessary to reconceptualize the
Alberta Andreotti, David Benassi, and Yuri Kazepov
Alberta Andreotti, David Benassi and Yuri Kazepov
Western capitalism in transition:
global processes, local challenges
Capitalism is not merely a way of organising production and consumption based on the private ownership of the means of production, driven by
alleged natural human behaviour (selfishness, self-interest) and aimed at
maximising profit. The sociological understanding of capitalism defines it as
a model for the structure of the whole of society, where economic momentum is ‘only’ one of the aspects of such a structure.
In this introduction we
industrial production – the assembly line and all that it meant for labour relations – which was also widely discussed in Europe.
Back in idyllic medieval Heidelberg, Weber produced several famous essays on methodology, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism , studies on Russia after the 1905 revolution and on industrial relations in a modern factory, and co-founded with Simmel and Tönnies the German Sociological Association in 1909. In The Protestant Ethic , first published in the form of two long essays in 1904 and 1905 and then in revised form as a
4147 Inglis–Are the Irish different_BB_Layout 1 29/07/2014 09:26 Page 22
Where is Ireland in the worlds of capitalism?
Seàn Ó Riain
Capitalism is supposed to make the societies of the world more similar. Closer
economic ties bring far distant societies into contact with one another while the
pressures of competition and the spread of capitalist markets appear to drive
economies and societies around the world towards a single model of optimal
economic organisation. However, it is also clear that different countries have vastly
different economies, even among
Chinese finance and the future
of authoritarian capitalism
The jury is very much out on how epiphenomenal the West’s post1800 advantage will be.
Kenneth Pomeranz (2009)
Reevaluating China’s financial development in historical comparative context challenges existing ways of thinking about the
dynamics of global order and China’s place within it. This global
order is in a deep state of flux and uncertainty, yet our posing of
questions surrounding the fate of the liberal world order occlude
the possibility that China is constructing its own version of capitalist
The double movement and the
perspectives of contemporary capitalism
The perspectives of contemporary capitalism
The current financial and economic crisis of industrialised countries, which
started in 2008, has made the interpretation of our societies more difficult.
We are in an uncertain and dynamic phase, characterised by high rates of
growth in some emerging large countries (China, India and Brazil, up to
2015), high levels of economic interdependence and competition on a global
scale, strong de-standardisation trends, increasing social