Capital and ideology / Thomas Piketty ; translated by Arthur Goldhammer.

by Piketty, Thomas, 1971- [author.]Looking glass; Goldhammer, Arthur [translator.]Looking glass.

Publisher: Cambridge, Massachusetts : The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2020.Description: ix, 1093 pages : illustrations (black and white) ; 24 cm.ISBN: 9780674980822.Subject(s): Economics -- Political aspects | EqualityLooking glass | Ideology -- Economic aspects | PropertyLooking glass | Social changeLooking glass | SocialismLooking glassNote: Includes bibliographical references and index. Language: Translated from the French.
Item type Home library Collection Class number Status Date due Barcode Item reservations
Long loan Central Saint Martins
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Printed books 305 PIK (Browse shelf (Opens below)) Issued 10/01/2022 54196286
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

A New York Times Best Seller
An NPR Best Book of the Year

The epic successor to one of the most important books of the century: at once a retelling of global history, a scathing critique of contemporary politics, and a bold proposal for a new and fairer economic system.

Thomas Piketty's bestselling Capital in the Twenty-First Century galvanized global debate about inequality. In this audacious follow-up, Piketty challenges us to revolutionize how we think about politics, ideology, and history. He exposes the ideas that have sustained inequality for the past millennium, reveals why the shallow politics of right and left are failing us today, and outlines the structure of a fairer economic system.

Our economy, Piketty observes, is not a natural fact. Markets, profits, and capital are all historical constructs that depend on choices. Piketty explores the material and ideological interactions of conflicting social groups that have given us slavery, serfdom, colonialism, communism, and hypercapitalism, shaping the lives of billions. He concludes that the great driver of human progress over the centuries has been the struggle for equality and education and not, as often argued, the assertion of property rights or the pursuit of stability. The new era of extreme inequality that has derailed that progress since the 1980s, he shows, is partly a reaction against communism, but it is also the fruit of ignorance, intellectual specialization, and our drift toward the dead-end politics of identity.

Once we understand this, we can begin to envision a more balanced approach to economics and politics. Piketty argues for a new "participatory" socialism, a system founded on an ideology of equality, social property, education, and the sharing of knowledge and power. Capital and Ideology is destined to be one of the indispensable books of our time, a work that will not only help us understand the world, but that will change it.

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Translated from the French.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Preface and Acknowledgments (p. vii)
  • Introduction (p. 1)
  • Part 1 Inequality Regimes in History
  • 1 Ternary Societies: Trifunctional Inequality (p. 51)
  • 2 European Societies of Orders: Power and Property (p. 65)
  • 3 The Invention of Ownership Societies (p. 99)
  • 4 Ownership Societies: The Case of France (p. 126)
  • 5 Ownership Societies: European Trajectories (p. 156)
  • Part 2 Slave and Colonial Societies
  • 6 Slave Societies: Extreme Inequality (p. 203)
  • 7 Colonial Societies: Diversity and Domination (p. 252)
  • 8 Ternary Societies and Colonialism: The Case of India (p. 304)
  • 9 Ternary Societies and Colonialism: Eurasian Trajectories (p. 362)
  • Part 3 The Great Transformation of the Twentieth Century
  • 10 The Crisis of Ownership Societies (p. 415)
  • 11 Social-Democratic Societies: Incomplete Equality (p. 486)
  • 12 Communist and Postcommunist Societies (p. 578)
  • 13 Hypercapitalism: Between Modernity and Archaism (p. 648)
  • Part 4 Rethinking the Dimensions of Political Conflict
  • 14 Borders and Property: The Construction of Equality (p. 719)
  • 15 Brahmin Left: New Euro-American Cleavages (p. 807)
  • 16 Social Nativism: The Postcolonial Identitarian Trap (p. 862)
  • 17 Elements for a Participatory Socialism for me Twenty-First Century (p. 966)
  • Conclusion (p. 1035)
  • Glossary (p. 1043)
  • Contents in Detail (p. 1045)
  • List of Tables and Illustrations (p. 1058)
  • Index (p. 1065)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Publishers Weekly Review

Rather than an economic law of nature, capitalism's remorseless promotion of inequality is a political choice that can be undone with redistributive polices, argues economist Piketty (Capital in the Twenty-First Century) in this wide-ranging historical survey of "inequality regimes"--dogmas that justify hierarchies of wealth and power. He focuses on modern capitalist "ownership societies" in Europe and America that made property rights the "quasi-sacred" basis of political order. (Britain and France, Piketty notes, compensated slave owners for lost human "property" after abolition.) The extremes of wealth and poverty such economic systems generated subsided with the 20th-century rise of high-tax social-democratic welfare states, he argues--then returned in today's "hypercapitalist" global economy, bringing social disaffection and nativist politics with them. Piketty's scholarship, encompassing everything from Ottoman tax receipts to Jane Austen novels, is formidable but ponderous; fortunately, readers can easily follow his arguments just by browsing the fascinating data charts and tables. The statistical blizzard supports Piketty's case for a "participatory socialism" that would make Bernie Sanders blush, featuring income and wealth taxes of 90% on the rich, worker comanagement of corporations, universal access to college, open borders, and global governance via "transnational assemblies." This ambitious manifesto will stir controversy, but also cement Piketty's position as the Left's leading economic theorist. (Mar.)

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