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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Irritating Words: Neoliberalism (TA)

BBC Radio 4 - Thinking Allowed, Work and Consumption; Neo-liberal Economics:

Laurie Taylor: "Now, I know from experience that there are certain words and phrases which when used by my guests or myself in this programme, arouse varying degrees of irritation.

'Hegemony' is on the list, as is 'social capital' and 'ontology' and 'bourgeois', but easily top of the charts is 'neoliberalism'.

Is it, asked one recent correspondent, nothing more than an all-purpose term of abuse for anyone who disagrees with Marxism"...

Philip Mirowski: There's this larger idea that people who don't care about politics at all imbibe this kind of neoliberalism from their environment and for example Ilana Gershon has a lovely set of articles showing how Facebook is a device for training youth how to be neoliberal agents.

Because it takes your information for free, sells it to others for profit and if, what you're supposed to do is you're supposed to construct a profile so you can play around with being a person who's different from who you really are. And then you get little metrics about how many friends you have and so forth and so on.

I mean, what it is is you have this sense of yourself as this weird agglomeration of parts that you can put together.

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