Indebted, Conversations in Political Economy with Maurizio Lazzarato (Paris) | nikolajanovic's blogpost @ Memefest
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Indebted, Conversations in Political Economy with Maurizio Lazzarato (Paris)

Thursday, 31 May, 5pm, NAB LG01, A Goldsmiths' Centre for Cultural Studies event, with support from Departments of Anthropology and Sociology

In the current economic crisis we have entered into a new age of debt. In
spite of emergency loans, bailouts and liquidity injections, waves of
defaults, bankruptcies and capital drains have left the world economy
without cash. Governments, firms, banks, and families are forced into a
permanent state of debt. For many this economic crisis reflects the
failures of the financial capitalism that has run wild since the
Washington consensus and the related capital and labour deregulations of the
1980s. But is really debt a new phenomenon? And is it just a condition of
the economy? For Nietzsche, we had debt from time immemorial. It is at the
basis of relations of power and value and indeed the (all too) human
condition. The gift constitutes the original social bond. But is there
ever gift without debt? For Marx capital is above all a social relation.
But is debt itself an even more primordial social relation that only
intensifies in the contemporary era of neo-liberal capitalism?

Part of our Conversations in Critical Political Economy series, in this
workshop Maurizio Lazzarato will discuss the politics of debt based on
his recent books on debt that have sparked an international debate on the
crisis of capitalism, the intersections between politics and the economy and
the new possibilities for human-centered economies.

Mao Mollona, Discussant
Scott Lash, Chair

Free and all welcome.


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10 years, 6 months ago

Money is a contract to the larger economy, but it's a commodity to the banking system. One which can be manufactured by increasing demand, ie. debt. It's as if lawyers had to validate every handshake and were paid for it.

A market needs a medium of exchange, but if that medium is in private hands, then the rest of the market is subservient. Government used to be a private function as well. It was called monarchy. When the system became so taken for granted that kings thought society existed to serve them and not the other way around, they were no longer worth the cost and were replaced by government as public trust. Monarchists thought "mob rule" could never work, but few would go back to monarchies today. Eventually banking will be a public utility and few will look back with much regret.





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