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The Intellectual Origins of the Global Financial Crisis$
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Roger Berkowitz and Taun N. Toay

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780823249602

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823249602.001.0001

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“no Revolution Required”

“no Revolution Required”

(p.25) Two “no Revolution Required”
The Intellectual Origins of the Global Financial Crisis

Jerome Kohn

Fordham University Press

It is strange to look for the origins of the 21st century financial crisis in 19th century imperialism. And yet, imperialism, as the politics of unlimited expansion of state power for private benefit, has much in common with our globalized world in which the public good is derived from private interests. Based in Thomas Hobbes political thinking, modern government is rooted in and grows from the acquisition of power. Hobbes sees that an endless acquisition of wealth corresponds to an endless acquisition of power. Arendt adds that the upshot of that correspondence is “the blind conformism of bourgeois society,” which deprives men of their ability to act into the future. Jerome Kohn argues that the logical end of capitalism is the conformism of a world comprised exclusively of private interests.

Keywords:   Hannah Arendt, Nazi Germany, Karl Marx, Entpolitisierung, The Origins of Totalitarianism, Superfluous money, Expansion for Expansion's sake, Wall Street, Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan, Bourgeoisie, Condition of perpetual war

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