Twenty-First Century Inequality & Capitalism: Piketty, Marx and Beyond is a collection that begins with economist Thomas Piketty’s 2014 book. Most chapters critique Piketty from the perspective of critical theory, global political economy or public sociology, drawing on the work of Karl Marx or the Marxist tradition. The emphasis focuses on elements that are under-theorized or omitted entirely from the economists’ analysis. This includes the importance of considering class and labor dynamics, the recent rise of finance capitalism, insights from feminism, demography, and conflict studies, the Frankfurt School, the world market and the world-system, the rise of a transnational capitalist class, the coming environmental catastrophe, etc. Our goal is to fully understand and suggest action to address today’s capitalist inequality crisis. Contributors are: Robert J. Antonio, J.I. (Hans) Bakker, Roslyn Wallach Bologh, Alessandro Bonnano, Christopher Chase-Dunn, Harry F. Dahms, Eoin Flaherty, Daniel Krier, Basak Kus, Lauren Langman, Dana Marie Louie, Peter Marcuse, Sandor Nagy, Charles Reitz, William I. Robinson, Saskia Sassen, David A. Smith, David N. Smith, Tony Smith, Michael Thompson, Sylvia Walby, Erik Olin Wright.
Lauren Langman is a Professor of Sociology at the Loyola University of Chicago. He has long worked in the tradition of the Frankfurt School with special concern with the impact of political economy in shaping character, identity and desire, national character, hegemony and social movements, especially global justice movements. He is past president of RC 36, Alienation Research of the International Sociological Association (ISA), chair of the Marxist section of the American Sociological Assocation (ASA) and recipient of its lifetime achievement award.
David A. Smith is a Professor of Sociology at the University of California at Irvine. His research focuses on global commodity chains, world cities and the political economy of the world-system. He is Editor of the
International Journal of Comparative Sociology.
Table of contents
PrefaceAcknowledgementsList of Figures and TablesNotes on ContributorsIntroductionLauren Langman and David A. SmithPart 1. Broad Reviews and Critiques1 Class and Inequality in PikettyEric Olin Wright2 Vautrin’s Lesson: Historical Trends, Universal Challenges, and Policy ResponsesBasak Kus and Dana Louie3 Turning Piketty into a Sociologist?Sylvia Walby4 Predatory Logics: Going Well beyond InequalitySaskia Sassen5 Complex Inequalities in the Age of Financialisation: Piketty, Marx, and Class-Biased Power ResourcesEoin Flaherty6 Piketty and Patrimonialism: A Frankfurt School Critique of Piketty’s Use of Marx, Weber, Political Economy, and Comparative Historical SociologyJ. I. (Hans) Bakker7 The Missing Element in Piketty’s WorkRoslyn Wallach Bologh8 Critical Theory, Radical Reform, and Planetary Sociology: Between Impossibility and InevitabilityHarry F. DahmsPart 2. Inequality9 Beyond Piketty’s Economism: History, Culture, and the Critique of InequalityDaniel Krier and Kevin S. Amidon10 Accounting for Inequality: Questioning Piketty on National Income Accounts and the Capital-Labor SplitCharles Reitz11 The Political Dimensions of Economic Division: Republicanism, Social Justice, and the Evaluation of Economic InequalityMichael J. ThompsonPart 3. Global Inequality12 Piketty on the World Market and Inequality within NationsTony Smith13 Capitalism in the Twenty-First Century: Global Inequality, Piketty, and the Transnational Capitalist ClassWilliam I. Robinson14 The Piketty Challenge: Global Inequality and World RevolutionsChristopher Chase-Dunn and Sandor Nagy15 Global Inequality, Competition, Uncertainty, and the Legitimation Crisis of NeoliberalismAlessandro Bonanno16 The Piketty Thesis and the Environmental Wall: Rentier Society, Post-Carbon Democracy, or Apocalyptic Ruin?Robert J. Antonio17 The Adventures of Professor Piketty: In Which We Meet the Intrepid Data-Hunter Thomas Piketty and Hear His Startling StoryDavid Norman Smith with art by
Tom Johnson18 21st Century Capital: Falling Profit Rates and System EntropyPostscript to “The Adventures of Professor Piketty”David Norman Smith19 From Inequality to Social JusticePeter MarcuseConclusion: Capitalism, Contradiction, and CrisisLauren Langman and David A. SmithIndex
All students and academics interested in contemporary inequality and social problems in both the humanities and social sciences, but also the educated general public.