Numero 07 ECONOMY

Economy, Politics, and Society in the Time of the Infinite Great Crisis


This essay offers a management scholar’s perspective on the themes of the current crisis, the remedies in terms of monetary and economic politics that are being enacted, and the role of political economics and of economists in the recent experience. The necessarily simplified analysis is done by following a historical route that moves from the liberalist economic thought starting in the seventies. Through the analysis of its evolution in the nineties and in the first decade of the current millennium, the essay proposes an interpretation of the role of the economists in particular and of their relation with politics as well as the need for an overcoming of the current condition. The connection between economy, society, and politics is interpreted within such a perspective in the quest for the relation with Reason.


Pinocchio and Economy


The essay argues for the simultaneous autonomy and lack of self-sufficiency of the various realms of action and thought that affect social practices. In particular, it focuses on the distinct competencies of economy and philosophy in terms of elaborating questions that imply goals, values, and also always economic sustainability.


The Commons between Economics, Law, and Philosophy


This paper briefly explores the cultural and political context within which the notion of the “commons” has developed as a successful idea. It explores some notions such as “sustainability” that have been already normalized by mainstream economics, and it asks the question of whether a similar fate will happen also to the commons. The essay discusses some current contestations of this notion and its revolutionary potential, and it concludes that by genuinely deploying the commons as a weapon of revolutionary theory and praxis, scholars might succeed in developing a new vision rooted neither in the positivistic world of the “is” nor in the ideological world of the “ought to be” but in the creative and generative world of the “could be.”


Critique of Political Economy and Politics: between Althusser and Marx

Personen / Politiker / Deutschland / Marx / Schriften

The essay investigates some distinctive features of the critique of political economy, and especially its relation with the realm of politics. To this purpose, reference is made to Althusser’s interpretation of Marx in Lire le Capital, with its strengths and limitations. The essay explores a complex mode of understanding the link between theory and praxis according to which it is not possible to deduce one term from the other.


Economics and Relations: The Difficult Way out of the Logic of Homo Oeconomicus


The model of the homo oeconomicus as a social agent whose only goal is the maximization of individual profit has been criticized for two decades at least. Yet, the wide debate on the crisis of such a model has not affected its popularity at the level of generalized sensibility. Therefore, understanding the reasons for such a success and asking whether the critiques truly hit the mark become important. After a brief excursus of the history of the concept, the essay investigates three cases of such critiques: B. S. Frey’s proposal of the homo oeconomicus maturus, the critique coming from the rediscovery of civil economics as proposed by S. Zamagni and L. Bruni, and the general anthropological rethinking caused by the theme of the gift. Through this path, the author argues for a specific thesis, namely, that in order to move “beyond” the homo oeconomicus implementing its model is not enough; rather, one needs to reformulate the anthropological vision that supports it.


The Relation between Economy and Finance


Concepts such as rationality, usefulness, preference, happiness, (neo)liberalism, capital, profit, currency, money, credit, financial products, and derivatives seem to belong to the same field, whereas on the contrary the economic crises that succeed one another are prompting us to reflect on the kind of anthropology and cultural horizon within which such concepts have emerged and solidified.

Today, answering the questions “What is economy?” and “What is finance?” seems inescapable. Whereas economy is a set of social relations that unfolds in the three fields of production, circulation, and distribution of goods, the definition of finance and the nature and typology of financial products are less clear.

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