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.
institutional complementarities that characterised postwar capitalism created relatively integrated socio-economic regimes, which have been inherently challenged since the 1970s. The third part addresses the relevant role played by the increased mobility of capital, labour and goods in this process, underlining their crucial destabilising impact on contemporary fragmented capitalism. We will not make predictions about the directions of change or even the end of capitalism. Capitalism has proved to be very flexible and adaptable to the most diverse situations (Peck and
an undermining of class solidarity. Conclusion From the perspective of 2014, the process underway in the 1980s, and begun at the end of the 1960s, has been called the ‘dissolution of the regime of postwar capitalism’.46 It showed a similar pattern across the advanced capitalist 145 146 The British left in a global context countries, but the USA was where the various trends originated – ‘the ending of the Bretton Woods system and of inflation, the growth of budget deficits as a result of tax resistance and tax cuts, the rise of debt-financing of government
and the ‘crisis of the left’ were two sides of the same coin. Hall was not alone in identifying this ‘crisis’ or calling for renewal. In 1978 Eric Hobsbawm argued that Labour's decline had its roots in the structural changes of 1950s postwar capitalism, and that working-class identity and solidarity were fragmented and weakened. 13 The same year Rowbotham, Wainwright and Segal published Beyond the Fragments , which confronted the divisions within the left from a socialist-feminist perspective, and argued that many