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The Neoliberal Paradox

Ray Kiely

This ambitious work provides a history and critique of neoliberalism, both as a body of ideas and as a political practice. It is an original and compelling contribution to the neoliberalism debate.
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Chapter 4: The second crisis of liberal modernity, the Chicago School and the rise of the New Right

Ray Kiely


The chapter first traces the development of neoliberal thought in the post-war period, particularly through developments at the Mont Pelerin Society, and the growth of a distinctive Chicago School. The chapter then moves on to consider the rise of the New Right, first in the US, and then in Britain, and in both cases shows how this fused neoliberal economics and conservative politics. The chapter then moves on to discuss the rise of both neoliberalism and the New Right in the context of the beginning of the cultural and economic crises of the 1960s and 1970s in the developed world. It demonstrates both the populism of both neoliberalism and the New Right, but also highlights some of the conflicting tendencies within the New Right, and how these illustrate some of the tensions within neoliberal thought. The conclusion draws this together by showing how the commonalities between conservatives and liberals in the New Right might lead us to question some of neoliberalism’s claims concerning spontaneity, the free market and limited government.

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