Money and Households in a Capitalist Economy

Money and Households in a Capitalist Economy

A Gendered Post Keynesian–Institutional Analysis

Zdravka Todorova

Post Keynesian analyses of monetary production have not given much attention to households as institutions, while a good deal of the literature in feminist economics discusses households in a strictly microeconomic context, with little consideration of monetary phenomena. This book, a unique study of the capitalist economy, utilizes a distinctive combination of Post Keynesian, institutional, and gender analysis to examine household economics in capitalist society in order to flesh out the gaps in each.

Chapter 4: Towards a Gendered Post Keynesian–Institutional Analysis

Zdravka Todorova

Subjects: economics and finance, post-keynesian economics

Extract

INTRODUCTION This chapter combines the method of Institutional analysis (the Veblenian dichotomy and the notion of evolution) with the recognition of gender as an analytical category (as opposed to the ‘add women and stir approach’) and relates them to a Neo-Chartalist Post Keynesian theory via a historical example of colonial taxation in Africa. The discussed pastoralist economy prior to colonial taxation presents a contrast to a monetary production economy that is at the center of Post Keynesian and Institutional theory. In this way we bring forward the importance of money as an institution for livelihood in a monetary production economy. Furthermore, this discussion illuminates the social evolution of the ‘gender process’ – specifically a transformation of a complementary gender division of labor into a hierarchical gender division of labor, and its connection to the evolution of socio-economic relations due to the institutionalization of a monetary unit of account. I describe the evolution of a monetary production process within pastoral societies and the effects on the gender process. The emergence of the notion of separate public/market versus private/household spheres is a manifestation of these effects. I use this historical discussion to begin delineating the connection between monetary production and gender processes, and to analyze the household as an evolving institution in relation to other institutions such as money and the state, rather than as a natural unit. Next, I apply Veblen’s evolutionary stage model to the so-called ‘cult of domesticity’ which is based on Victorian notions of separate and gendered public and...

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