Neoliberalism: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover


1st Edition

By Julie Wilson


246 pages

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Thanks to the rise of neoliberalism over the past several decades, we live in an era of rampant anxiety, insecurity, and inequality. While neoliberalism has become somewhat of an academic buzzword in recent years, this book offers a rich and multilayered introduction to what is arguably the most pressing issue of our times. Engaging with prominent scholarship in media and cultural studies, as well as geography, sociology, economic history, and political theory, author Julie Wilson pushes against easy understandings of neoliberalism as market fundamentalism, rampant consumerism, and/or hyper-individualism. Instead, Wilson invites readers to interrogate neoliberalism in true cultural studies fashion, at once as history, theory, practice, policy, culture, identity, politics, and lived experience. Indeed, the book’s primary aim is to introduce neoliberalism in all of its social complexity, so that readers can see how neoliberalism shapes their own lives, as well as our political horizons, and thereby start to imagine and build alternative worlds.


"Equal parts history, analysis and manifesto, Neoliberalism dissects the competitive, free market logic that defines our era.Wilson engages a dazzling range of theory and research in a highly accessible fashion, and brings this material to life with examples from schooling, popular media culture and politics. Especially geared to youth, this remarkable textbook shows how the rising inequalities and anxieties associated with neoliberalism can be resisted."-Laurie Ouellette, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

"This book is both a brilliant intellectual intervention and a vital teaching resource. Julie Wilson shows how abstract theories of neoliberalism relate to our everyday life experiences, offering us a range of critical tools for understanding neoliberal culture and pointing to how we might construct alternatives." -Jo Littler, City University of London

Table of Contents


Living in Competition

Part I: Critical Foundations

Chapter One

A New Hegemony: The Rise of Neoliberalism

Chapter Two

Neoliberal Truths and Consequences: The 4 Ds

Chapter Three

The Cultural Powers of Neoliberalism: A Case Study

Part II: Neoliberal Culture

Chapter Four

The Hustle: Self-Enterprise and Neoliberal Labor

Chapter Five

The Moods of Enterprise: Neoliberal Affect and the Care of the Self

Chapter Six

Enterprising Democracy: Neoliberal Citizenship and the Privatization of Politics


Living in Common

About the Author

Julie A. Wilson is Associate Professor, Allegheny College, Department of Communication Arts and Theatre. She is the author (with Emily Chivers Yochim) of Mothering through Precarity: Women's Work and Digital Media.

About the Series

Key Ideas in Media & Cultural Studies

The Key Ideas in Media and Cultural Studies series covers the main concepts, issues, debates and controversies in contemporary media and cultural studies. Titles in the series constitute authoritative, original essays rather than literary surveys, but are also written explicitly to support undergraduate teaching. The series provides students and teachers with lively and original treatments of key topics in the field.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies