For this panel we invite papers that put theories of globalisation and neoliberalism to the test.
Capitalism, as its foremost critics have pointed out, is a revolutionary force par excellence. Capital represents powerful social and economic relationships that constantly transform and restructure the built environment as much as relations of production. Despite this obvious insight, contemporary anthropology has been seduced by such tropes as 'globalization' and 'neoliberalism'. Most social scientists and anthropologists invoke these categories in the name of history, taking them to define an entirely new stage of capitalism. An increasing number of scholars in anthropology and history point out, however, that these concepts foster a sense of "novelty" that is premised upon dominant narratives of state power and capital that were created during the "age of development" and "Keynesianism." For this panel we invite papers that put theories of globalisation and neoliberalism to test. In what instances are 'globalisation' and 'neoliberalism' legitimate historical/analytical categories that reflect changes in the global system? In what instances are they legends or mythologies? What can anthropological analysis contribute to revealing the mythical dimension of 'globalisation' and 'neoliberalism' as cultural categories? What can anthropology say about the ways in which these periodizations lack analytical rigor and thereby dramatize the contemporary as if it is a frightening break with the past?