Sociology Professor Johanna Bockman spoke about her new book Markets in the Name of Socialism: The Left-Wing Origins of Neoliberalism on C-SPAN Book TV this weekend and at the Woodrow Wilson Center on Thursday. At the Woodrow Wilson Center, she participated in a lively debate on a panel titled "Responding to the Economic Crisis: Austerity, Neoliberalism, and Beyond Neoliberalism." In her book, she revisits the worldwide spread of neoliberalism, which has transformed economies, polities, and societies everywhere. In conventional accounts, American and Western European economists, such as Milton Friedman and Friedrich von Hayek, sold neoliberalism by popularizing their free-market ideas and radical criticisms of the state. Rather than focusing on the agency of a few prominent, conservative economists, Markets in the Name of Socialism reveals a dialogue among many economists on both sides of the Iron Curtain about democracy, socialism, and markets. These discussions led to the transformations of 1989 and, unintentionally, the rise of neoliberalism. This book takes a truly transnational look at economists' professional ideas over 100 years across the capitalist West and the socialist East. Clearly translating complicated economic ideas and neoliberal theories, it presents a significant reinterpretation of Cold War history, the fall of communism, and the rise of today's dominant economic ideology.
October 10, 2011