Capital and its Discontents

Conversations with Radical Thinkers in a Time of Tumult

Edited by Sasha Lilley  

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Capitalism is stumbling, empire is faltering, and the planet is thawing. Yet many people are still grasping to understand these multiple crises and to find a way forward to a just future. Into the breach come the essential insights of Capital and Its Discontents, which cut through the gristle to get to the heart of the matter about the nature of capitalism and imperialism, capitalism’s vulnerabilities at this conjuncture–and what can we do to hasten its demise.

Through a series of incisive conversations with some of the most eminent thinkers and political economists on the Left–including David Harvey, Ellen Meiksins Wood, Mike Davis, Leo Panitch, Tariq Ali, and Noam Chomsky–Capital and Its Discontents illuminates the dynamic contradictions undergirding capitalism and the potential for its dethroning. The book challenges conventional wisdom on the Left about the nature of globalization, neoliberalism and imperialism, as well as the agrarian question in the Global South. It probes deeply into the roots of the global economic meltdown, the role of debt and privatization in dampening social revolt, and considers capitalism’s dynamic ability to find ever new sources of accumulation–whether through imperial or ecological plunder or the commodification of previously unpaid female labor.

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  • Part I: Globalization, Neoliberalism and Empire
  • Ellen Meiksins Wood on Empire of Capital
  • Leo Panitch and Doug Henwood on Globalization
  • David Harvey on Neoliberalism
  • Gillian Hart on South Africa, East Asia, and Multiple Trajectories of Capitalist Development
  • David McNally on the Global Economic Meltdown
  • Part II: The Contradictions of Capitalism
  • John Bellamy Foster on the Ecological Dimensions of Marx’s Thought
  • Agrarian Change in the Global South
  • Jason W. Moore on the Ecological Crisis of Capitalism
  • Part III: Alternatives?
  • Vivek Chibber on Third World Development
  • Mike Davis on Isaac Deutscher’s Century
  • Tariq Ali on Social Protest in the Sixties and Today
  • John Sanbonmatsu on Postmodernism
  • Noam Chomsky on Organizing a Post-Capitalist Future


  • Sasha Lilley

    Sasha Lilley is a writer and radio broadcaster. She is the co-founder and host of the critically acclaimed program of radical ideas, Against the Grain. As program director of KPFA Radio, the flagship station of the Pacifica Network, she headed up such award-winning national broadcasts as Winter Soldier: Iraq and Afghanistan. Sasha Lilley is the series editor of PM Press’ political economy imprint, Spectre.

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