Karl Polanyi on Ethics and Economics by Gregory Baum

By Gregory Baum

A examine of the relation among ethics, tradition, and economics in Karl Polanyi's writings. This paintings identifies and analyzes key ideas of Polanyi's idea and indicates how they follow to the modern debate on ethics and economics. Exploring Polanyi's lesser-known works in addition to "The nice Transformation", it examines Polanyi's interpretation of recent financial and social background, clarifies the moral presuppositions found in Polanyi's paintings, and addresses how Polanyi's knowing of the relation among ethics and economics touches on many matters correct to the modern debate concerning the world's fiscal destiny. the writer argues that we should always glance to Polanyi's knowing of contemporary capitalism to reinstate the social discourse and, in political perform, the foundations of reciprocity and unity. He issues to examples of makes an attempt to formulate replacement versions of monetary improvement and to create new sorts of institutional and cultural intervention.


"A concise and well timed disquisition on Karl Polanyi's concept. Baum brings to gentle issues which are nonetheless mostly neglected by means of Polanyi students and shows substitute avenues of considering and fixing the ethical, social, and cultural predicaments of our instances. He exhibits that there's, for individuals of the left, an highbrow and theoretical substitute open air the standard and well-worn radical discourse. This e-book is of utmost relevance." Daniel Salée, tuition of neighborhood and Public Affairs, Concordia college.

"A invaluable and unique contribution to a greater knowing of Polanyi's lifelong quandary with social ethics." Paul Medow, division of Economics, York college.

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But then, from the middle of the nineteenth century on, the counter-movement slowly emerged, offering a social 17 Karl Polanyi on Ethics and Economics defence against the commodification of the land and the disintegration of local cultures. In the 1870s, Polanyi argues, public legislation in England changed its orientation. The inheritance of the common law was deliberately enhanced by statutes expressly passed to protect the habitations and occupations of the rural classes from the effects of freedom of contract.

Whether the scientist realizes it or not, social-scientific research is a form of social action; it may have the effect of stabilizing the existing order or supporting movements for social change, but in both cases it has consequences for society. Though positivistic practitioners of social and economic science claim maximum objectivity and deny the subjective dimension, it is generally recognized that the important controversies in the social sciences cannot be resolved by the scientific method alone and indeed reflect profound differences in philosophical presuppositions.

He rejects the evolutionary perspective and the idea of necessary progress that in his day dominated social theory on the right and on the left. Polanyi refuses to look upon modernity as the high-point of humankind's historical development. To him it is absurd to interpret the rich variety of traditional cultures simply as stages of preparation for die supposedly higher achievements of dhe scientific-technological age. He holds that these great cultures embodied profound human wisdom and provided examples of humanity from which we can and should learn today.

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