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CONTENTS

  1. Göran Therborn: Twilight of Swedish Social Democracy Hailed with relief for fear of a bleaker outcome, the SAP’s poor performance in the September 2018 election underlines the malaise afflicting social democracy’s global flagship. Therborn charts the country’s SAP-led neoliberalization—and rise of the far-right Sweden Democrats—against the backdrop of recession and refugee arrivals.
  2. David Kotz: End of the Neoliberal Era? Prognosis for the US economy, after a decade of unprecedented monetary stimulus. Does the distempered character of the recovery—soaring profits, feverish asset prices, anaemic wage growth—signal a structural crisis in the existing regime of capitalist accumulation, and transition to a new institutional framework?
  3. Perry Anderson: An Afternoon with Althusser Notes on a conversation in the summer of 1977, when the philosopher made an impromptu visit to the NLR office. Wide-ranging discussion on Althusser’s relations with the PCF, the condition of Marxism, the Chinese and Russian revolutions compared; Trotsky, Sraffa and the problems with Gramsci’s concept of hegemony.
  4. Richard Stallman: Talking to the Mailman Growing domination of companies over users, malicious function­alities, tracking and widespread surveillance. The leading campaigner for software freedom discusses the present technological landscape and the political relevance of the campaign for free software.
  5. Donald MacKenzie, Alice Bamford: Counterperformativity If speech can—in the famous argument of J. L. Austin—not only be true or false, but also do things, what about economic models? And what about when models go wrong, or actually undermine their own assumptions? Black–Scholes, gamma traps and gaming—a typology of the perverse effects of some key financial tools.
  6. Dylan Riley: Metaphysicking the West Dylan Riley on Heinrich August Winkler, The Age of Catastrophe. ‘The West’ as normative construct—and narrative telos—in a moralizing account from Berlin of the 20th century’s wars and revolutions.
  7. Zöe Sutherland: Artwork as Critique Zöe Sutherland on Marcus Verhagen, Flows and Counterflows. Comparative survey of how contemporary artists have engaged with the invisible dynamics of globalization through their work.
  8. John Grahl: Beyond Redistribution? John Grahl on Philippe Askenazy, Tous rentiers! Contra Piketty’s fiscal prescriptions, a French economist’s recipe for reducing inequality through re-mobilization of labour and critique of ‘propertarian’ ideology.

Articles:

  1. Dylan Riley,
    ‘Metaphysicking
    the West’ Dylan Riley on Heinrich August Winkler, The Age of Catastrophe. ‘The West’ as normative construct—and narrative telos—in a moralizing account from Berlin of the 20th century’s wars and revolutions.

Editorials:

  1. Which Feminisms?, The American anti-discrimination paradigm, generated in the 1960s to neutralize the threat of radical black protests, has provided the palimpsest for global feminism for the past twenty years. How will it be challenged by the eruption of new gender protests, from Buenos Aires to Warsaw, Washington to Rome?
  2. Erdoğan’s Cesspit, As the AKP’s crackdown on political dissent continues and Erdoğan’s autocratic ambitions become ever more apparent, his Western apologists lament the fall from grace of a man—moderate and liberal-minded—who never existed.
  3. Portugal, How and why has Portugal differed from Spain since the downfall of their respective dictatorships in the mid 70s? The course of political and economic development since the Revolution of 1974 was contained, and its current discrepant outcome: a conventional social-democratic government obliged to break with Euro-austerity under the pressure of a pact with the radical left.
  4. The French Spring, How did Emmanuel Macron become President of France virtually overnight? What are the likely consequences of his rule? The long epoch of collusive alternation between Centre-Left and Centre-Right, and its abrupt ending; the realities of Le Pen’s Front National, and the riposte of Mélenchon’s La France insoumise. Has neo-liberalism finally arrived in force in Paris, and if so what are the implications for Europe?
  5. Casting Off, How to assess the latest set-back for the European Union: the vote to leave by its second-largest state? Complex determinants of the Brexit protest—party-political contingencies played out against topographies of class and sub-national disaffection—met by single-minded condemnation of it by the global elite.
  6. Oppositions, After years of economic crisis and social protest, the cartel parties of the extreme centre now face a challenge to their dominance from outside-left forces in a number of Western countries. Contours of the emergent left oppositions, their platforms and figureheads, from Tsipras to Corbyn, Sanders to Mélenchon, Grillo to Iglesias.
  7. Europe, Debt, deflation and stagnation have now become the familiar economic stigmata of the EU. But what of its political distortions? A survey of the three principal—and steadily worsening—imbalances in the outcome of European integration: the oligarchic cast of its governors, the lop-sided rise of Germany, and the declining autonomy of the Union as a whole in the North Atlantic universe.
  8. Annexations, After decades of connivance with territorial seizures from Palestine to East Timor, the West rediscovers the principle of state sovereignty in Crimea. The actual record of 20th-century land grabs, and the cross-cutting geopolitical pressures bearing down on Ukraine.
  9. 2011, Echoes of past rebellions in 2011’s global upsurge of protest. Against a backdrop of world economic slump, what forces will shape the outcome of contests between a raddled system and its emergent challengers?
  10. Arab Concatenation, From Tunis to Manama, 2011 has brought a chain-reaction of popular upheavals, in a region where imperial domination and domestic despotism have long been entwined. A call for political liberty to reconnect with social equality and Arab fraternity, in a radical new internationalism.
  11. Wall Street Crisis, Against mainstream accounts, Peter Gowan argues that the origins of the global financial crisis lie in the dynamics of the New Wall Street System that has emerged since the 1980s. Contours of the Atlantic model, and implications—geopolitical, ideological, economic—of its blow-out.
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