Michael Rustin on Thomas Piketty’s Capitalism and Ideology

Soundings - ISSN 1362-6620
Volume 2023 Number 83

Michael Rustin on Thomas Piketty’s Capitalism and Ideology
pages 142-152
DOI: 10.3898/SOUN.83.REV03.2023


Thomas Piketty’s Capitalism and Ideology is the 1150-page 2020 sequel to Capital in the Twentieth Century, a best-selling publishing sensation in 2014 that described the inexorable growth of inequality under capitalism, as a consequence of fact that the long-term rate of return to capital had generally exceeded the rate of economic growth. Capitalism and Ideology develops the thesis of the earlier volume into a micro-historical account of the development of property-based societies. It proposes a strong programme for their reform in the direction of a renewed social democracy. In offering an historical account of the development of capitalism it enables us to reopen debates about political futures, and to locate proposals for change within this trajectory: it historicises the present as a way of arguing that things could be otherwise. Possibly because of its explicitly socialist political argument, it has not so far received the attention and acclaim of its predecessor.

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To cite this article
(2023) Michael Rustin on Thomas Piketty’s Capitalism and Ideology, Soundings, 2023(83), 142-152. https://doi.org/10.3898/SOUN.83.REV03.2023

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