Sociologist David Harvey, Professor in the Graduate Centre of City University of New York, asks if it is time to look beyond capitalism towards a new social order that would allow us to live within a system that really could be responsible, just, and humane?
Harvey’s influential books include The New Imperialism; Paris, Capital of Modernity; Social Justice and the City; Limits to Capital; The Urbanization of Capital; The Condition of Postmodernity; Justice, Nature, and the Geography of Difference; Spaces of Hope; and Spaces of Capital: Towards a Critical Geography.
This narrated animation is based on a lecture, “The Crises of Capitalism”, given by Professor Harvey in April this year at the RSA. For over 250 years the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) has been a cradle of enlightenment thinking and a force for social progress.
Radical sociologist Professor David Harvey visits the RSA to explain how capitalism came to dominate the world and why it resulted in the current financial crisis.
Taking a long view of the current crisis, Professor Harvey exposes the follies of the international financial system, looking closely at the nature of capitalism, how it works and why sometimes it doesn’t.
Examining the cycles of boom and bust in the world’s housing and stock markets, and the vast flows of money that surge round the world daily, Harvey shows that periodic episodes of meltdown are not only inevitable in the capitalist system but, in fact, are essential to its survival. Harvey argues that the essence of capitalism is its amorality and lawlessness and to talk of a regulated, ethical capitalism is to make a fundamental error.
Can crises of the current sort be contained within the constraints of capitalism? Or is it time to make the case for a social order that would allow us to live within a different type of system – one that really could be responsible, just, and humane?
“Capitalism never solves its crisis problems.”
“It moves them around geographically.”