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Revulsion and awe: charting the development of the moral economy of capitalism and its hero in the American imagination, from the protestant ethic to ecstasy of the entrepreneur.

Hancock, David (2016) Revulsion and awe: charting the development of the moral economy of capitalism and its hero in the American imagination, from the protestant ethic to ecstasy of the entrepreneur. Journal of Cultural Economy, 10 (2). pp. 136-149. ISSN 1753-0369, 1753-0350

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Official URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/175303...

Abstract

The spirit of capitalism shifted throughout the twentieth century, Boltanski and Chiapello place it sometime in the period between the 1960s and 1990s (2005), for Bell it had happened by the mid-1970s and its contradictions were already apparent (1998). David Harvey is more specific and cites 1979 as the dawn of the new era (2005). This paper seeks to build on this scholarship of the changing spirit of capitalism and read it through the development of the heroic figure of the American imagination, through the representation of the capitalist hero. Its aim is to situate the figure of the capitalist hero in the post-crash era and ultimately to understand the seductive power of the new capitalism that enables it to thrive. My thesis is that the seductive power of the new capitalism can be understood as an oscillation between revulsion and awe, we are both morally repulsed by the venality of capitalism yet also captivated by it. Revulsion and awe are at the core of the libidinality of the new capitalism and can be seen through the representation of the heroic object of the capitalist imagination.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Libidinal Economy, Expenditure, Georges Bataille, Spirit of Capitalism, Film, Moral Economy
Depositing User: J McPeak
Date Deposited: 20 Feb 2017 14:33
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2018 14:18
URI: http://bucks.collections.crest.ac.uk/id/eprint/15330

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