WE INVITE
YOU TO
A SYDNEY IDEAS
FORUM
The University of Sydney
A DEBT TO SOCIETY? THE POLITICS OF AUSTERITY IN AN AGE OF ABUNDANCE

Presented by the Social Studies of Finance Group in partnership with the Australian Working Group on Financialisation (AWGF), the University of Sydney


Earlier this year the Abbott government delivered an “emergency budget” designed to end universal health care, deregulate university fees, further reduce an unemployment benefit that already condemns its recipients to an impoverished existence, and intensify policies of workfare. The budget was similar in scope and scale to the austerity programs rolled out across Europe in the wake of the global financial crisis.

Yet alongside the so-called “debt crisis” and persistent calls for fiscal austerity, financial markets are again growing and nearly every asset class is booming. Thus, even as governments have engaged in an unremitting struggle against income inflation, assets such as homes and housing have continued to appreciate with no discernible limit. In principle, the phenomenon of “financialization” encourages even the most precarious workers to borrow cheaply and accumulate assets, even while the social wage continues to decline.

This combination of fiscal austerity and financial abundance has become an enduring feature of Anglo-American economies since the 1980s. This panel reflects upon the recent history of austerity and its paradoxical relationship to financialization. How can we account for the political and affective force of austerity and how can we challenge it?

The panel will be chaired by Professor Dick Bryan, Department of Political Economy, at the University of Sydney.

PANELISTS:

  • Nina Boy, Senior Researcher at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)
  • Paul Crosthwaite, Lecturer in the Department of English Literature, University of Edinburgh

  • Miranda Joseph, Director of Graduate Studies in Gender & Women’s Studies, University of Arizona

  • Philip Mirowski, Carl Koch Professor of Economics and the History and Philosophy of Science, University of Notre Dame, Indiana

  • Ronen Palan, Professor of International Political Economy in the Department of International Politics at the City University London

    For more about each speaker click here


The panel discussion will followed by the launch of Debt to Society: Accounting for Life under Capitalism (University of Minnesota Press), a new book by Miranda Joseph, Professor of Gender & Women’s Studies, The University of Arizona. Please join us for refreshments after the launch.



WEDNESDAY 13 AUGUST
6 to 7.30pm
The Forum Restaurant
The Darlington Centre
174 City Rd, Darlington
The University of Sydney
Click here for University maps


RSVP
Free event with online registration requested. Click here for the registration page.

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