Sunday, February 4, 2018

Which neoliberalism do you mean?

"Neoliberal" has become the catch-all curse-world of the political left. But it has a complex genealogy dating back to the late 19th century, which is sketched in by Daniel Rodgers in Dissent. A paragraph:
But the problem with neoliberalism is neither that it has no meaning nor that it has an infinite number of them. It is that the term has been applied to four distinctly different phenomena. “Neoliberalism” stands, first, for the late capitalist economy of our times; second, for a strand of ideas; third, for a globally circulating bundle of policy measures; and fourth, for the hegemonic force of the culture that surrounds and entraps us. These four neoliberalisms are intricately related, of course. But the very act of bundling them together, tucking their differences, loose ends, and a clear sense of their actually existing relations under the fabric of a single word, may, perversely, obscure what we need to see most clearly.

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