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The Social Question of Neoliberal Capitalism


  • UCLA Sociology Department 279 Haines Hall Los Angeles, CA 90095 (map)

The original articulation of the “social question” in 18th-19th Century Europe emerged in the wake of capitalist industrialization, proletarianization, social immiserization, and mass upheavals, even revolutions. These struggles led to national programs of labor regulation and social welfare first in continental Europe and then throughout the developed world. Thanks to the uneven and combined development of capitalism on a world scale, working people in the colonized and dominated south were excluded from the benefits of the Northern class compromise. Today, neoliberal capitalism in the 21st Century has not just reconfigured the political economic drivers of social dislocation, exclusion, inequality and injustice, it has also erased the “social” from public discourses and imaginations with its ideology of individual responsibility and entrepreneurialism. This conference revives and repositions “the social question” and perhaps also reconstructs its meaning and politics. A complete schedule of talks and links to conference papers are available via the link below.