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Tony Dundon, Miguel Martinez Lucio, Emma Hughes, Debra Howcroft, Arjan Keizer, and Roger Walden

Introduction This chapter discusses the various socio-economic developments that have created the political climate that shapes the balance of power between employers and employees. The next section reviews briefly the importance of history, outlining the organising and disorganising of industrial capitalism and the implications for power, politics and influence in employment. Next, three significant themes are discussed that have led to shifts in the nature of work and eroded the foundations for greater influence: globalisation , financialisation and

in Power, politics and influence at work
Marcel Stoetzle

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

in Beginning classical social theory
Series: Beginnings
Author: Marcel Stoetzle

Beginning classical social theory introduces students and educated general readers to thirteen key social theorists by way of examining a single, exemplary text by each author. After an introductory reflection on the concept of ‘social theory’, the book is organized chronologically, ranging from Comte to Adorno.

The chapters address key themes of classical social theory, including modernity, democracy, gender, class, the commodity form, community, social facts, race, capitalism, strangeness, love and marriage. They present a diverse range of arguments that introduce readers to how classical theorists thought and wrote.

The book is written as a tool that promotes independent, critical engagement with, rather than reproduction of knowledge about theory. It answers the need for a book that helps students develop the skill to critically read theory.

After short, contextualizing introductions to each author, every chapter presents a close reading of one single key text demonstrating how to break down and analyze their arguments. Rather than learning how to admire the canonical theorists, readers are alerted to the flow of their arguments, the texts’ contradictions and limitations and to what makes them ‘classical’. Having gotten ‘under the skin’ of one key text by each author will provide readers with a solid starting point for further study.

The book will be suitable as the principal textbook in social theory modules as much as alongside a more conventional textbook as a recommended additional tool for self-study. It will appeal to undergraduate and postgraduate students as well as educated lay readers.

Ben Cohen and Eve Garrard

(Originally published in ‘A Marxian Approach to the Problem of Justice’, Philosophica (Ghent), Vol. 33 (1), 1984, pp. 33–86) In this essay I review a fast-growing sector of the current literature on Marx and the controversy that has fuelled its growth. During the last decade or so, the keen interest within moral and political philosophy in the concept of justice has left its mark on the philosophical discussion of his work. It has left it in the shape of the question: did Marx himself condemn capitalism as unjust? There are those who have argued

in The Norman Geras Reader
Anna Dezeuze

Futility and precarity Liquid capitalism’s new ‘lightness and motility’, argued Zygmunt Bauman in 2000, ‘have turned into the paramount source of uncertainty for all the rest’.1 Indeed, capitalism’s short-term tactics of mobility and evasion have been systematically accompanied since the 1980s by strategies of downsizing and outsourcing that have radically transformed the very definitions of work and society. Terms such as ‘flexploitation’ and ‘precarisation’ were coined in the late 1990s to describe the new uncertain status of work within this new global

in Almost nothing
Ben Cohen and Eve Garrard

constituency I am talking about not only opposed the Iraq War, but also opposed the intervention in Afghanistan before that, and in Kosovo before that, and so on back to the first Gulf War that evicted Saddam Hussein’s armies from Kuwait. And Berman’s other reasons – (1), and (3) through (6) – did not figure, or did not figure every time, in the previous conflicts I have mentioned. But the United States as the foremost embodiment of global capitalism, on one side, and (speaking loosely) regimes and movements of an utterly ghastly kind politically, on the other-these have

in The Norman Geras Reader
Anna Dezeuze

negative value of junk, in much the same way as Beat author Jack Kerouac could exclaim: ‘I love it because it’s ugly.’5 The precariousness of the junk aesthetic, I will argue, lies in such varyingly and variously dynamic relations between art and trash, as they operate through the artists’ choices of materials and their modes of assemblage. The politics of such precarious practices emerge in their interactions with the social critiques concerning the place of the subject in late 1950s and early 1960s capitalism. In particular, I will suggest that the individual’s life

in Almost nothing
Anna Dezeuze

’, according to Foster, while Isa Genzken’s precarious works (which were also included in Unmonumental) tended to be ‘desperate’.32 Like Bourriaud, who considered ‘precariousness’ to be a reflection of the global expansion of capitalism, Foster related the increased visibility of such precarious practices to the 2008 collapse of the ‘financial house of cards’ which had been the culmination of the ongoing ‘charge of neoliberalism’ begun in the 1980s.33 Furthermore, Foster also accounted for the artists’ sense of ‘heightened insecurity’ in the light of global political events

in Almost nothing
Abstract only
Sean W. Burges

a mix of different types of economic actors, sometimes combining pension funds, Brazilian firms and foreign capital within the one holding company. The result is what Sergio Lazzarini ( 2011 ) has labelled a ‘capitalism of linkages’, a pyramidal ownership structure which results in a tight web interconnecting a wide range of actors in the Brazilian economy with seemingly disparate interests, as well as linking them to the state in a manner that gives the government significant input into corporate strategy formulation. Illustrative of the interconnectedness of

in Brazil in the world
Roger Spalding and Christopher Parker

expressions of the class conflict. Instead the authors present a more complex picture of youth groups attempting to exercise some autonomy in the construction of distinctive identities, but which nevertheless remain constrained within the boundaries of consumer capitalism. As Dick Hebdige said of the Mods of the first half of the 1960s: The mod combined previously disparate elements to create himself into a metaphor, the appropriateness of which was apparent only to himself … The magical transformation of commodities had been mysterious and were often invisible to the

in Historiography