Neoliberalism: Its Roots, Development, and Legitimation

  • Alessandro BonannoEmail author


This chapter illustrates salient socio-economic conditions that allowed the implementation of neoliberalism and reviews basic aspects of early theories of neoliberalism. It opens with an illustration of the transition from Fordism to neoliberalism and the development of neoliberal globalization. It underscores the creation of global networks of production and consumption and the emergence of the current global working class and global capitalist class. It further stresses the importance of the crisis of the left vis-à-vis discourses that discredited the negotiated solutions of the contradictions of capitalism and supported the impartiality and desirability of the functioning of the market. The fundamental ideological components of neoliberalism are illustrated through a review of relevant ideas of Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich von Hayek and the debate and events surrounding the evolution of neoliberalism from the creation of the Mont Pelerin Society to the first adoption of neoliberal ideas by the ordoliberals in the post-World War II West Germany. The chapter concludes by stressing the importance of the related concepts of the impartiality of the market and the “end of politics.”


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologySam Houston State UniversityHuntsvilleUSA

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