Is There A Future To Socialism Under Conditions of Neoliberal Hegemony?: A lecture by Joseph Schwartz
A lecture by Joseph M. Schwartz, Professor of Political Science (Temple University), and author of The Future of Democratic Equality: Reconstructing Social Solidarity in a Fragmented United States (2009) - winner of the 2011 American Political Science Association's David Easton Book Prize.
Presented by the Platypus Affiliated Society at the University of Chicago on April 3, 2014.
The Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory (3CT)
University of Chicago Department of Political Science
In the late 1970s and early 1980s socialists in Western Europe strove to gain greater democratic control through efforts such as the Swedish Meidner Plan and Mitterand's first 2 years in office. But instead of a more radical turn to social democracy, neoliberalism prevailed and became the new common sense not only of the right, but also of moderate social democratic/US liberal left. This "common sense" has been hard to replace with a counter-hegemonic left "good sense" because of the absence of an alternative governing project to the left of neoliberalism in OECD countries. Consequently, while neoliberal policies gave rise to Great Recession, the proffered solutions to the crisis -- even from the mainstream social democracy in N. Europe -- have remained neoliberal in character.
This lecture will explore why social forces and movements from the left have been unable to generate a clear alternative to neoliberalism and outline the need for a global alternative “social structure of accumula