By Anita Chari
Anita Chari revives the most important proposal of reification from Marx and the Frankfurt college to highlight the resistance to neoliberal capitalism now forming on the point of political economic system and the extra sensate, experiential point of subjective transformation. examining paintings by way of Oliver Ressler, Zanny Begg, Claire Fontaine, Jason Lazarus, and Mika Rottenberg, in addition to the politics of Occupy Wall road, Chari identifies practices by which artists and activists have challenged neoliberalism's social and political logics. via positioning the topic in uncomfortable or most unlikely destinations of hope, useful orientation, and statement, such practices divulge neoliberal capitalism's inherent tensions and contradictions.
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Extra info for A Political Economy of the Senses: Neoliberalism, Reification, Critique (New Directions in Critical Theory)
The ﬁnancial classes have responded to crises “according to a double standard, doing everything possible in order to preserve the revenue of the social group, even obtaining revenue through other means when it has declined in its traditional forms—whatever the consequences for other social groups and countries. ”21 While I agree with accounts such as these that neoliberalism has entailed a massive redistribution of wealth upward, and that neoliberalization has no doubt been a deliberate result of ﬁnancial policies that beneﬁted the ﬁnancial/managerial capitalist classes, my conceptual focus is less on the dynamics of class relations and more on the ways in which the neoliberal conﬁguration of the relationship between economics and politics tends to obscure the class dynamics of neoliberal economic policies.
That is to say, the neoliberal state pursues economic policies that are in some instances interventionist in relation to the economy and in other instances entail deregulation and a rollback of the state in relation to economic policy. At the same time, the political economic process of ﬁnancialization creates conditions in which the economy is prone to crisis and therefore increasingly immune to regulation. These two dimensions of neoliberalization point to the ways in which neoliberalism depoliticizes the economy speciﬁcally by trading on the ﬂuid boundary between economics and politics in neoliberal society.
The welfare state’s function was largely (though not solely) to be an agent of decommodiﬁcation. ” By contrast to the welfare state, which pursued decommodiﬁcation, the competition state “has pursued increased marketization in order to make economic activities located within the national territory, or which otherwise contribute to national wealth, more competitive in international and transnational terms” (259). This increased marketization took the form of the reduction of government spending in order to promote private investment, as well as the deregulation of economic, primarily ﬁnancial, activities.
A Political Economy of the Senses: Neoliberalism, Reification, Critique (New Directions in Critical Theory) by Anita Chari
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