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Preview — The Great Transformation by Karl Polanyi
The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time
In particular, three of Polanyi's simplest, most commonsensical contentions were extremely illuminating to me and greatly bolstered my ability to criticize capitalist orthodoxy.
But you get something here you won't get in hegel or marx (in part because he is...more
Polanyi is not your run of the mill economist - he does not use equations - he uses context and does not describe events in a vacuum, integrating various disciplines from the social sciences. He describes four elements which comprised 19th century civilization, and which have all been swept away by the great bloodbaths of the early 20th century - the gold standard, the international balance of power, the classical liberal s...more
Polanyi is not an easy read, but the thoughts he elucidates to challenge his readers are worth the effort. His basic thesis is that a "free market" economy (one which lacks governmental controls and regulations) is not only impossible to achieve, but undesirable as well. His assertion is that a truly free market could not exist for any length of time witho...more
While Polanyi's analysis of the natu...more
". . . Machine production in a...more
Among those fictions are that:
* the motive of economic gain governs all "rational" social behavior--conclusively disproved by mountains of ethnographic evidence from all over the world;
* human labor, land, and...more
"Because of what's going on in the economy, this election is basically a referendum on what kind of nation we're going to be and what kind of democracy we're going to be. I'd like to recommend the literature of what's wrong with capitalism — how if you let it just run unregulated, it will self-destruct like it's doing right now, and it will drive millions of people into bankruptcy and kick up unemployment. People haven't written about that in a long time because we've bee...more
Also, Polanyi is about as sexy as economics gets.
Altrimenti avrei avuto molta più facilità a comprendere il libro di Polanyi.
Che, facendo un po' di violenza alla sua unitarietà, porta avanti sostanzialmente due tesi, due interpretazioni: una del liberismo economico del XIX secolo e una del fascismo (dei fascismi) del XX.
Con la prima, l'
It is unfair to say that this book is prophetic. As he was arguing with the founder of modern economics, the author was going on far more than intuition. (Karl Polanyi was the intellectual rival of the founder of modern neoliberalism--that is, of the man who later became economic adviser to Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan.) It is, however, the best cr...more
Polanyi can be very dry and overly dense at times but his points are well taken and extremely well thought out. Definitely worth a read.