The rise of populism across Europe and the US – first in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis and then in the shape of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and the Brexit vote in 2016 – are indicative of a seismic shift in the terrain of economic ideas in public discourse. Settled liberal norms concerning ever-increasing international market expansion, and the political integration required to sustain it, have been decisively upset by political forces that, whilst once on the fringes, now dominate economic debate. How might we make sense of this ideological breakdown and what might we hope for next?
This book turns to the work of Karl Polanyi for answers, developing the expansive, historicised approach to political economy that Polanyi pioneered. Holmes provides a wide-ranging history of economic ideas read in terms of a series of hopeful theoretical visions of order, in which political, social and ecological contradictions could be transcended in one way or another. Through this, the book demonstrates that the failing utopian visions of pre-2008 economic orthodoxy, which have formed the backdrop to the rise of populism today, are only the latest in a series that stretches across economic thought in Western modernity as a whole.
This book will interest students and scholars of IPE, political science, sociology, anthropology, law and history.
"Polanyi in Times of Populism is… a much-needed plea to acknowledge that the democratic precondition of any exploratory movement and learning process, which are so vital in times of transformation, is a society in which plural interests, ideas, and values can be expressed and discussed."
Richard Bärnthaler, Österreich Z Soziol (2019)
"Overall, this monography seems to be the first major step of a research programme of crucial importance in contemporary (international) political economy. For a person not versed in the history of economic thought, it is not the easiest reading, but every line is worth many times the effort."
Paulus Wagner, The International Spectator (2019)
Part I - Polanyian perspectives
Chapter 1 - Polanyi in times of Brexit and Trump
Chapter 2 - Towards a post-Polanyian approach
Part II - Contradiction and transcendence
Chapter 3 - Property, order and commerce
Chapter 4 - Justice, price and power
Chapter 5 - Transcendence and the disembedding of economic ideas
Part III - Marketised social protection
Chapter 6 - Money and finance
Chapter 7 - Nature and climate change
Chapter 8 - People and welfare provision
Part IV – Contradiction without transcendence
Chapter 9 – Habitation versus improvement today
For almost two decades now, the RIPE Series published by Routledge has been an essential forum for cutting-edge scholarship in International Political Economy. The series brings together new and established scholars working in critical, cultural and constructivist political economy. Books in the RIPE Series typically combine an innovative contribution to theoretical debates with rigorous empirical analysis.
The RIPE Series seeks to cultivate:
James Brassett – Warwick
Eleni Tsingou – Copenhagen Business School
Susanne Soederberg – Queen’s