`Ross Abbinnett brings a keen and subtle philosophical mind to bear on themes and debates that have become commonplace in sociology. This is a sinuously written book which casts new light on pressing contemporary issues. It is required reading for everyone who wants to think seriously and with an open mind about the terrain of the present' - Keith Tester, Professor of Sociology, University of Portsmouth This incisive and timely book provides a concise and reliable guide to the debate on modernity and postmodernity. In particular the work of Lyotard, Beck, Bauman, Baudrillard, Giddens, Jameson and Derrida is critically reviewed. Culture and Identity provides: a thorough and accessible discussion of the main themes in the modernity-postmodernity debate; a shrewd and penetrating account of how these themes address everyday life; a novel account of how technology is altering our perceptions of the `human'; and a balanced account of the hope for radical politics and radical critique to correct the excesses of capitalism. What emerges most forcefully from the book is the error of dismissing postmodernism as a self-indulgent and ultimately, dangerous piece of ideology. Abbinnett provides a pertinent reminder of the continuing importance of the themes and challenges raised in the `postmodern moment'.
Chapter 12: Capitalism, Globalization and Cosmopolitanism
Capitalism, Globalization and Cosmopolitanism
In Spectres of Marx, Derrida enumerates a list of the maladies that continue to afflict the global organization of capitalism: statelessness, economic conflict, unemployment, the amorality of free market investments, Third World debt, arms trading, inter-ethnic wars, international crime, the inadequacy of international law and its institutions (Derrida, 1994a, pp. 81–3). Now, one of the principal aims of Derrida's reading of Marx is to register the impossibility of reducing these effects to vestigial phenomena that will, in the long run, be overcome by the moral and distributive justice of liberal capitalism. As we have seen, the temptation to preach the good news of the end of history and the triumph of the enlightenment over its secular and religious ...