“How, Fevre asks in his brilliant new book, can we critique Max Weber’s “iron cage” of economic rationality if we’re looking at the world from inside it? The great intellectuals of the past – Marx, Durkheim, Simmel, Weber, Cooley and more recently Polyani –were deeply troubled by a growing market mentality that we now so tepidly accept as “inevitable.” I won’t spoil the story but Fevre puts his finger on the moment when things went off track, and sets us back on track so we can take an honest look at our lives today. This is an enormously important challenge to our basic thinking about the most important organizing force in the world today: the market. A must read.” ; Arlie Russell Hochschild, author of The Commercialization of Intimate Life, and co-editor of Global Woman: Nannies, Maids and Sex Workers in the New Economy
Chapter Eight: Conclusion
Economic sociology's rigorous prosecution of the agenda defined by economic rationality only makes sense if it is coupled with a mistaken notion of the capabilities of social science. In reality, there is no compensation for economic sociology's neglect of moral considerations because the goals it defines for itself are unattainable. Indeed, economic sociology does further damage to morality because it treats it as a means to economic ends. If morality can only be valued when sanctioned by economic rationality, this cannot help but demean and distort it. This certainly makes it impossible for us to imagine a different kind of society to the one we live in. To do this we would need to hold morality to be equal with economic rationality and not ...