Reading group – 19th session From 2021-06-29 to 2021-06-29
The 19th session of the reading group of the PREDPOD project will take place on June 29 at 4pm GMT. In this session the following article will be discussed: Margaret Somers "Toward a Predistributive Democracy: Diagnosing Oligarchy, Dedemocratization, and the Deceits of Market Justice" (2021 forthcoming). Margaret Somers, our invited speaker, will make a brief presentation of the main ideas of his paper which will be followed by a reply by Catarina Neves and a debate with the participants.
Margaret Somers (speaker): Margaret R. Somers is Professor Emerita of Sociology and History, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is a comparative historical sociologist specializing in the work of Karl Polanyi, as well as political economy and economic thought (predistribution and the political economy of moral worth); democracy and citizenship rights; concept formation and historical epistemology. She is the author, with Fred Block, of The Power of Market fundamentalism: Karl Polanyi’s Critique, Harvard 2014, an intellectual archaeology of Polanyi’s thought that aims to generate a repertoire of Polanyian concepts, theoretical insights, and a usable social theory (named “Book of the Year 2014” by Economic Sociology and Political Economy (economicsociology.org). Her book Genealogies of Citizenship: Markets, Statelessness, and the Right to have Rights (Cambridge 2008), is a study of how the moral authority of the market has transformed rights-bearing citizens into the internally stateless, making rights, inclusion and moral worth a privilege dependent on contractual market value (awarded the 2009 Giovanni Sartori Award for concept formation by the American Political Science Association). Her work in-progress, Toward a Predistributive Democracy: Free-market Utopianism and the Alchemy of Misrecognition examines how the fiction of the free market primes us to misrecognize the cause of inequality as deregulation, blinds us to how capital grows relative to labor by extracting value rather than creating it, and to the role of predistributive dedemocratization in accelerating and institutionalizing oligarchy.
Catarina Neves (discussant) : Catarina Neves is a researcher at Centre for Ethics, Politics and Society, where she is also doing her PhD in Political Philosophy, with a thesis titled “Justifying an Unconditional Basic Income: reciprocity, productive justice and the impact of UBI in the labor market”. She is also a teaching assistant at Nova School of Business and Economics, in Lisbon.