|8 Mar 2011||5:00pm - 6:30pm||Room 3, Mill Lane Lecture Rooms, 8 Mill Lane, Cambridge|
Humanitas Visiting Professor in Women's Rights 2011
The Humanitas Chair in Women's Rights has been made possible by the generous support of Mrs Carol Saper
Professor Nancy Fraser (Henry A. and Louise Loeb Professor of Philosophy and Politics, The New School for Social Research, New York)
Lecture 1: A Polanyian Feminism? Re-reading The Great Transformation in the 21st Century
Karl Polanyi’s 1944 book 'The Great Transformation' rejected economism and instead analysed the previous crisis of capitalism as a crisis of social reproduction. He traced the roots of crisis to what he called the 'fictitious commodification' of labour, land and money and diagnosed the tendency of a 'free market society' to undermine the shared understandings that underpin social life. In his view, 19th-century efforts to create such a society proved so destructive of livelihoods, communities, and habitats as to trigger a century-long struggle between free-marketeers and those who sought to protect society from the ravages of the market. The end result of this “double movement” (marketisation versus social protection) was economic depression, political stalemate, and world war.
In the first lecture, Professor Nancy Fraser will re-read 'The Great Transformation' from a feminist perspective, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of its signature concepts. Although it was developed for an earlier era, Polanyi’s diagnosis is, Professor Nancy Fraser will argue, highly relevant today as the current crisis is not merely economic but also encompasses social reproduction and thus can be fruitfully analysed as a “great transformation,” in which a new round of efforts to commodify nature, labour, and money is sparking a new round of struggles. The following lectures and symposium will build upon this to create a Polanyian-feminist framework for theorising capitalist crisis in the 21st century.
Further lectures in the series are:
A symposium will take place on Thursday 17 March.
The lectures are free and open to all. Registration is required for the symposium.
About Professor Nancy Fraser
Professor Nancy Fraser is Henry A. and Louise Loeb Professor of Philosophy and Politics, The New School for Social Research, New York. Her research interests lie in social and political theory, feminist theory, 19th and 20th century European thought and philosophy of social science. From 2008-2010 she was Blaise Pascal International Research Chair, École des hautes études en science sociales, Paris.
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