Faculty Book: David Harvey
The Enigma of Capital and the Crises of Capitalism
(Oxford University Press, 2010)
Putting the 2008 financial disaster in the broadest possible context, Harvey gives an account that focuses not on subprime loans or mortgage securitization, but on something deeper: the flow of money through society. He shows how falling profit margins in the 1970s generated a deep transformation in which capital flowed across borders and production moved to cheaper labor markets. But as American workers’ income decreased, how could they afford to buy the products which fueled the now-global economy? To solve this problem, a new kind of finance capitalism arose, pouring rivers of credit to increasingly strapped consumers—and when the real estate market collapsed, so did this edifice that dominated our economy. The book, winner of the 2010 Isaac and Tamara Deutscher Book Prize, offers a richly informed discussion of how we can turn our economy in a new direction—fairer, healthier, and truly sustainable. David Harvey is a distinguished professor of anthropology at the Graduate Center.
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Submitted on: SEP 9, 2010