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The Making of Global Capitalism: The Political Economy Of American Empire Hardcover – October 9, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Lucid and indispensable guides to the history and practice of American Empire.”—Naomi Klein, award-winning journalist and author of The Shock Doctrine

“It’s the best left look at the U.S. empire I’ve seen. The picture of the U.S. as having the long-term dynamism and coherence of the global system ‘front of mind’, as the biz types say, makes far more sense than, say, the Chomskyism that pervades much of the left. They have few rivals and no betters in analyzing the relations between politics and economics, between globalization and American power, between theory and quotidian reality, and between crisis and political possibility.”—Doug Henwood, editor and publisher of Left Business Observer

“Combining the ferocity of investigative reporters, sophisticated skills in interpreting the historical archive, and a profound grasp of theory, Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin provide an astonishingly illuminating account of the making of global capitalism through the organization of a global financial system under US hegemony since World War II. If we are, as it seems, destined to live under the dictatorship of the world’s central bankers then it is vital for everyone to know how this came about and what the current fault lines might be that hold out prospects for strong anti-capitalist struggles to emerge. A must read for everyone who is concerned about where the future of capitalism might lie.”—David Harvey, CUNY Graduate Center, author of A Brief History of Neoliberalism

“Bringing new understanding to the dominant global role of the United States from World War I onward in business and economic policymaking, The Making of Global Capitalism advances an original perspective on the forces that have created our current epoch of neoliberal globalization. This is a major work in political economy—rigorously researched, compellingly written, and bursting with fresh insights on nearly every page.”—Robert Pollin, Professor of Economics and Co-Director of the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI), University of Massachusetts-Amherst

“Panitch and Gindin give us a history of global capitalism that brings together what has often been represented as unconnected. The authors help us see the active making of global capitalism mostly overlooked in mainstream explanation. A great book.”—Saskia Sassen, Robert S. Lynd Professor of Sociology at Columbia University and author of Territory, Authority, Rights

“Left-leaning intellectuals examine the exceptional role of the United States in the development of global capitalism ... .[a] densely detailed work.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Sweeping, timely, and well-researched study of global capitalism ... compelling.”—Publishers Weekly

“Deep, profound, and rich ... a truly epoch work that deserves careful, deliberate reading. Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin have so much to offer as we deliberate about the paths to follow for empowerment and meaningful change.”—Mimi Rosenberg, host of Building Bridges on WBAI

“A real tonic both theoretically and, especially, politically. Panitch and Gindin have a deep understanding of historical materialism—their analysis is concrete and always anchored to advancing class struggle as an epistemic as well as a political project”—Adolph Reed, professor of political science, University of Pennsylvania

“[G]ives an excellent history of capitalism and compares how modern capitalism in America has set the stage for the acceptance of global capitalism ... one of the best books I’ve read on the topic.”—David H., Book Bargains and Previews

“A meticulous history of how the American state, in conjunction with Wall Street, developed the institutional conditions that made global capitalism possible.”—Jake Olzen, Infoshop News

“A masterful century-long history of US corporate activity and state economic strategy. Insofar as capitalist states are where class interests are codified, their spicy reading of dry officialdom’s milquetoast narratives is absolutely vital to our knowledge about power. Most valuable are the ways these Canadians set out anti-capitalist principles and critiques of reformism, and defend socialist aspirations. In perhaps no other site in the English-speaking academic world are such committed, principled and generous leaders so warmly received by colleagues and students, and more importantly, by workers and communities in struggle. This means taking with utmost seriousness both their analysis and strategy, for even if they do not always jump the gap perfectly, no one I know has a better working model.”—Patrick Bond, Red Pepper

“Readers should avail themselves of Professors Leo Panitch and his colleague Sam Gindin’s excellent researching and insightful analysis, as well as their readable description and explanation of how the money part of the US empire works or doesn’t. Serious activists will learn: these authors teach the how and why of the world’s capitalist economic system.”—Saul Landau, Counterpunch

“Organize[d] .. Focused ... a confrontation with financial institutions that must be re-created as instruments of economic coordination and social welfare.”—Book News

“There is little doubt that The Making of Global Capitalism will soon establish itself as a benchmark text on the history of global capitalism during the 20th century ... Panitch and Gindin survey global capitalism from its head office so to speak, in order to follow a train of decisions and actions which they contend demonstrate precisely how global capitalism is—and indeed can only be—the logical result of the organization and operation of a new form of American empire.”—Canadian Journal of Political Science

About the Author

Sam Gindin is the former Research Director of the Canadian Autoworkers Union and Packer Visiting Chair in Social Justice at York University. Among his many publications, he is the author (with Greg Albo and Leo Panitch) of In and Out of Crisis: The Global Financial Meltdown and Left Alternatives.

Leo Panitch is Canada Research Chair in Comparative Political Economy and Distinguished Research Professor of Political Science at York University. Editor of The Socialist Register for 25 years, his many books include Working Class Politics in Crisis, A Different Kind of State, The End of Parliamentary Socialism, and American Empire and The Political Economy of Global Finance.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Verso (October 9, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844677427
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844677429
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.5 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #795,530 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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68 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Hans G. Despain on October 7, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Panitch and Gindin argue that market economies have never existed independent of nation states. The state was necessary for the genesis of capitalism, and the state was, and still is, necessary for its historical development and continuous reproduction. Nonetheless, Panitch and Gindin argue there is significant autonomy, or historical "differentiation," between the economy and the nation state. There are economic structural tendencies manifest from the logic of capital and the functioning of the market-system. At the same time nation states can affect these structural tendencies in remarkable ways.

In this sense, there has never been "separation" between capitalist reproduction/development and the state, but there is "differentiation" which has radically significant effects. There is a symbiotic relationship between the state and capitalistic reproduction/development.

This is a book of economic history. But is also a book of economic theory. The economic history is rich and interesting, aimed at explaining the historical emergence of global financial capitalism. While the history Panitch and Gindin offer is rich and interesting, the theory is still richer and even more intriguing.

Their history is primarily aimed, (1) at explaining the emergence of the "informal American empire" (what makes this empire "informal" is the hegemony is accomplished primarily through economic strategy, policy, and diplomacy; and less through military might and political coercion) and (2) demonstrating the historical shifting relationship (from decade to decade since the World War I) between workers, business, finance, and the state.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Raamin on October 26, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Probably one of the most important books written on the political economy of American empire. Pretty impressive list of references and a wide coverage of various aspects of making of Global capitalism since the end of second world war.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Gerald Parker on January 19, 2014
Format: Paperback
Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin have collaborated on a book, "The Making of Global Economy: the Political Economy of American Empire" (i.e. of U.S. neo-colonialism) that combines the virtues of deep analysis and clear language (and clear thinking, too). They do not deal in persiflage that sounds impressive but which ill serves a wide readership; Panitch and Gindin avoid unnecessary resort to jargon. It is refreshing to have a Canadian perspective upon the phenomena which they examine, all the more so since the authors are genuinely progressive, even socialist, in their analysis, without being hide-bound or doctrinaire.

That said, while the public for which they intend their book is wide, it still is for one that has the resolve to take on dense argument and uncompromising depth. The work is not a "quick read" by any stretch of the imagination. The rather small print and profusion of back-references, the latter too replete with much that is substantive and important to the case which the book makes to ignore, can tire the reader, making the volume arduous to handle navigating back and forth within it.

The hardback edition is well and fully bound, ruggedly and durably, with reasonably spaced margins to left and right of pages, but the binding is a tighter than ideal, requiring some effort on the reader's part to hold the pages flat enough for viewing the pages while going forward and back nimbly (and continually) between the main text and the notes. The reader will need two bookmarks while using the book; this reader added two slender coloured ribbons for the purpose to the binding spine of his own copy; that, of course, is not an option for this or most books' paperback editions.
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10 of 18 people found the following review helpful By GlobalChangeSupercenter5 on January 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
One of the curiousities of the death of our beloved Left has been the ascription, and often self-identification, of "Marxism" to middle-aged scholars who might have read a Kapital or three in their youth, but now are virtually Marx-free in their waking hours.

Panitch and Gindin have written an exhaustive (keep the coffee mug nearby) journalism of our times, scrupulously researched and fair to the majordomos and cap di tutti capi of our corporate state supersystem, which is not the greatest of compliments - do we really need to be so kind to Timmie Geithner, to Larry Summers, to the whole host of scoundrels and mountebanks that have shepherded the global financial fraud? If you want that kind of sober information, which documents the stranglehold the American capitalist governance structure has upon the world, this is a fine place, but it is laughable to suggest that there is any "promise" or "solution" that will come out of these ashes. Aside from a "class relations" or two, this radical writing will not tax the nominal academo-liberal trained to spit derision when within eye-blink of Grundrisse or "use-value."
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