After ’08: Social Policy and the Global Financial Crisis (2015)

I’ve recently been reading After ’08: Social Policy and the Global Financial Crisis (2015).

A blurb for the book reads:

“The global financial crisis of 2007-8 shook the economic foundations of nations, collapsed large financial institutions, and wiped out the livelihoods of millions of people. The crisis also marked a turning point for social policy, as world leaders were forced to take an ideological position: Should they pursue a neoliberal response to the crisis through austerity measures, increased privatization, and greater deregulation? Or, should they implement alternative policies to challenge the dominant neoliberal paradigm?

After ’08 examines how key global institutions, such as the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and International Labour Organization, as well as nation states around the world responded to the crisis. Comparing the experience of countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and North America, contributors gauge the extent to which the neoliberal landscape has shifted since the onset of the financial crisis and explore the directions social policy has taken. Did solutions to the crisis follow a similar trajectory across countries and regions? Or, did the diversity in national experiences produce a diversity of policy responses? And, if the latter, where did alternatives to neoliberalism emerge?

[End of blurb]

Neoliberalism doesn’t need to be turned into ‘a useful analytic tool’

I’ve discussed neoliberalism is previous posts including:

Can the term neoliberalism be turned into a useful analytic tool?

Based on my reading of After ’08, my sense is that neoliberalism is a fine term to use just as it is; why waste precious time turning it into ‘a useful analytic tool’?

I am very pleased that I have come across this book. It’s the kind of study that I will read closely in its entirety. My standard reading procedure involves reading fragments of hundreds of library books. This book is one of the great exceptions. I’m good to read every word, and to track down as many of the cited journal articles as I can.

I’m pleased that I was able to find, at once, via the Toronto Public Library website, one of the papers, published in 1990, that was referred to in one of the opening chapters. The paper, by Jane Jenson, is “Representations in Crisis: The Roots of Canada’s Permeable Fordism,” Canadian Journal of Political Science / Revue canadienne de science politique, Vol. 23, No. 4 (Dec., 990), pp. 653-683. The paper deals with how things in life are defined.


The book spells neoliberalism as neo-liberalism. Why the hyphen? The reason is unclear to me, but why not. It looks good, with the hyphen. Even though most discourse, including the blurb for the book, adopts the unhyphenated usage.

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