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Neoliberalism - the doctrine that market exchange is an ethic in itself, capable of acting as a guide for all human action - has become dominant in both thought and practice throughout much of the world since 1970 or so.Its spread has depended upon a reconstitution of state powers such that privatization, finance, and market processes are emphasized. State interventions in the economy are minimized, while the obligations of the state to provide for the welfare of its citizens are diminished. David Harvey, authorof 'The New Imperialism' and 'The Condition of Postmodernity', here tells the political-economic story of where neoliberalization came from and how it proliferated on the world stage. While Thatcher and Reagan are often cited as primary authors of this neoliberal turn, Harvey shows how a complex offorces, from Chile to China and from New York City to Mexico City, have also played their part. In addition he explores the continuities and contrasts between neoliberalism of the Clinton sort and the recent turn towards neoconservative imperialism of George W. Bush. Finally, through criticalengagement with this history, Harvey constructs a framework not only for analyzing the political and economic dangers that now surround us, but also for assessing the prospects for the more socially just alternatives being advocated by many oppositional movements.
David Harvey is Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He formerly held professorial posts at Oxford University and The Johns Hopkins University, and has written extensively on the political economy of globalization, urbanization, and cultural change. Oxford University Press published his book 'The New Imperialism' in September 2003 (reissued in paperback February 2005).