Market Delusions: Rethinking the Trajectories of Post-Socialist Societies
13 Pages Posted: 6 Jul 2013
Date Written: 2005
Recently, the recurring narrative that capitalism is stretching its tentacles ever wider and deeper into every crevice of daily life across the globe has been challenged in the context of western economies and the third world by an emerging post-development corpus of thought. The aim here is to extend this critique of market hegemony by investigating the so-called "transition" economies of East-Central Europe. Analyzing the extent to which market practices penetrated these societies in the years following the collapse of the socialist bloc, this paper highlights not only the shallow permeation of the market but also the multiplicity of development trajectories being pursued at both the household and societal levels. The outcome is to provide further evidence from the post-socialist East-Central European bloc to support the critique of market hegemony and open up the future to alternative possibilities beyond marketization.
Keywords: capitalism, Eastern Europe, socialist systems, informal economy, shadow economy, underground economy
JEL Classification: A14, B24, O17, H26, H31
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