The maladies of social capital II: Resisting neo-liberal conformism

Law, Alex and Mooney, Gerry (2006). The maladies of social capital II: Resisting neo-liberal conformism. Critique: Journal of Socialist Theory, 34(3) pp. 253–268.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/03017600600994679

Abstract

Social capital, we argue, constructs a new political and social conformism with the aim of demobilising working-class organisations and activity. It encourages a fatalistic and conformist notion of social capital by confining voluntarism to safe, de-politicised channels. Hence part of its attraction for New Labour and the New Democrats has been its conservative emphasis on the norms of social integration while neglecting the basis of social disintegration in neo-liberal capitalism. In contrast, we describe a politically active sense of voluntarism, ‘recalcitrant voluntarism’, based on resistance to neo-liberal imperatives.

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