The most prominent aspect of the current financial crisis is its systemic character which manifests itself in high levels of inequality, rampant unemployment, economic and social insecurity and environmental decay. This book explores the potential of a pluralistic and interdisciplinary approach for a deeper understanding of the manifold aspects of the economic crisis.
This book examines the potential of a number of contributions from heterodox economics and psychoanalysis in providing a deeper understanding of these problems. The book analyses some of the most debated aspects of the concepts of market, democracy and socialism and explores the role of structural ties between economic, social and psychological aspects of collective life. It also addresses the main economic aspects of the crisis and pays particular attention to a number of structural imbalances, and to the psychological interpretation of these phenomena.
By drawing together approaches from heterodox economics and psychoanalysis, this book adopts a pluralist and interdisciplinary approach to the study of these phenomena and manages to overcome the fragmentation so often present in social sciences.
Table of Contents
I. The Psychoanalytic Approach and its Potential for a Better Understanding of Economic and Social Phenomena 1. The Perspective of Psychoanalysis: An Outline 2. Implications for the Study of Economic and Social Phenomena 3. Psychoanalysis and Social Change 4. Some Controversial Aspects of Psychoanalysis II. The Perspective of Institutional Economics and its Potential for a Better Understanding of Economic and Social Phenomena 5. Institutional Economics: The Historical and Theoretical Framework 6. Veblen’s Evolutionary Perspective 7. Commons’s Theory of Collective Action 8. The Decline of Institutional Economics in the post World War II Period and the New Developments of Today III. The Institutional Analysis of the Market and the Interdisciplinary Approach to Social Evolution 9. The Market in the Heterodox Perspective 10. The Role of "Materialistic" and Psychological Factors in Social Evolution IV. The Economic and Psychological Aspect s of the Crisis of Today 11. The Role of Policy Coordination in Structural Problems 12. Public Spending and Credit Creation as the Drivers of Aggregate Demand 13. Economic and Psychological Implications V. The Structural Transformation of Economic Systems and the Social and Psychological Implications 14. The Structural Tendency of Aggregate Demand To Lag Behind the Aggregate Supply of Full Employment 15. The"Affluent Society" of John Kenneth Galbraith and Its Relevance for the Problems of Today
Arturo Hermann is a Senior Research Fellow at the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), Rome, Italy.