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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 8: Neoliberalism and the 2008 financial crisis

Ray Kiely


This chapter examines neoliberalism in the context of the 2008 financial crisis. The focus is on how neoliberals accounted for the causes of the crisis and the necessary responses to it. The chapter examines the causes of the crisis and especially neoliberal interpretations of it, and analyses the neoliberal medicine for resolving it, with detailed critical analysis of austerity. The weakness of neoliberal interpretations is then contrasted with neoliberal renewal in the face of such a crisis, and the chapter moves on to show how neoliberals can always point to the inescapable reality of government regulation and thus identify – no matter how unconvincingly – this as the main cause of the crisis. Finally, this discussion leads to a wider focus on how neoliberals understand and utilise politics and the question of de-politicisation and post-politics.

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