Narratives of Neoliberalism: The Role of Everyday Media Practices and the Reproduction of Dominant Ideas

Andreas Gofas & Colin Hay (eds), The Role of Ideas in Political Analysis: A Portrait of Contemporary Debates, London: Routledge, 2010

23 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2012

See all articles by David Hudson

David Hudson

University College London

Mary Martin

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of International Development

Date Written: January 1, 2010

Abstract

In our chapter we will make an argument about studying ideas through focusing on their (re)presentation in public discourses. We begin from the position that the media play an important political role as a broker and interpreter of ideas. We are also contributing to existing analyses of the media in international relations/international political economy. We have chosen an episode of when (and how) the media acted as a contributory mechanism in sustaining the dominant ‘neoliberal ideology’. The example we present is the collapse of the London-based Barings Bank in 1995, and we show the episode’s impact on the dominant neoliberal regulatory discourses. The role of crisis is important because it represents a moment when the limits of the liberal regulatory regime were exposed, but also one where the regime was subsequently secured and legitimated. Crucially, we argue, because the collapse was interpreted and narrated as the fault of a rogue individual rather than a consequence of more structural regulatory weaknesses, the existing regime was exonerated. The chapter looks at the mechanisms by which neoliberalism, as the dominant discourse, is reproduced through media accounts.

Keywords: narrative, neoliberalism, ideas, Leeson, Barings Bank, media, discourse, IPE, IR, rogue trade, discursive construction, crisis, finance

Suggested Citation

Hudson, David and Martin, Mary, Narratives of Neoliberalism: The Role of Everyday Media Practices and the Reproduction of Dominant Ideas (January 1, 2010). Andreas Gofas & Colin Hay (eds), The Role of Ideas in Political Analysis: A Portrait of Contemporary Debates, London: Routledge, 2010, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2033221

David Hudson (Contact Author)

University College London ( email )

Gower Street
London, WC1E 6BT
United Kingdom

Mary Martin

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of International Development ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

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