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CapitalismThe Future of an Illusion$
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Fred L. Block

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780520283220

Published to California Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520283220.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 15 October 2019

Afterword

Afterword

Chapter:
(p.202) Afterword
Source:
Capitalism
Author(s):

Fred L. Block

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520283220.003.0008

This afterword develops a brief critique of the way analysts and activists on the left continue to use the concept of capitalism. My main argument is that the term “capitalism” was effectively stolen by the right wing in the 1970s and 1980s and infused with a meaning that emphasizes capitalism’s durability and its unchanging nature. So when those on the left use the term, they inadvertently reinforce the problematic claims of their political opponents. A similar episode of linguistic larceny happened earlier. Between 1890 and 1910, political thinkers in England and the United States effectively stole the term “liberalism” and redefined it from “economic liberalism” to “political liberalism.”...

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