Walter Benn Michaels

All articles by this author

The Neoliberal Imagination

The Neoliberal Imagination

And just as the benefits of status presume the irrelevance of material inequality, so do its injustices. When you think your real problem is not that people have more money than you but that the people who have more money condescend to you, your problem is status. And when the solution to your problem is (as Sennett recommends) “mutual respect across the boundaries of inequality” (i.e., no more condescending), you have the imaginative world of neoliberalism.

The Neoliberal Imagination

The Neoliberal Imagination

And just as the benefits of status presume the irrelevance of material inequality, so do its injustices. When you think your real problem is not that people have more money than you but that the people who have more money condescend to you, your problem is status. And when the solution to your problem is (as Sennett recommends) “mutual respect across the boundaries of inequality” (i.e., no more condescending), you have the imaginative world of neoliberalism.