Idiotism: Capitalism and the Privatisation of Life (Paperback)

Idiotism: Capitalism and the Privatisation of Life By Neal Curtis Cover Image

Idiotism: Capitalism and the Privatisation of Life (Paperback)

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Idiotism examines the condition of society in late capitalism where the market logic of neoliberalism has become the new ‘common sense’, taken as the model for the organisation and management of all aspects of social life. Using the Greek word idios, meaning 'private', Neal Curtis calls this privatisation of the world ‘idiotism’.

Constructing a new vocabulary with which to understand contemporary society, Curtis examines 'idiotism' across the spheres of economics, politics and culture, drawing on the philosophy and political theories of Martin Heidegger, Louis Althusser, Franco Berardi, Jacques Rancière and Cornelius Castoriadis.

Idiotism recasts our conception of the new neoliberal 'common sense', presenting it as not simply a case of false consciousness, but an ontological problem related to our being-in-the-world.
Neal Curtis is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Film, Television and Media Studies at the University of Auckland. He is the author of War and Social Theory: World, Value, Identity (2006), Against Autonomy: Lyotard, Action and Judgement (2001) and editor of The Pictorial Turn (2010).
Product Details ISBN: 9780745331553
ISBN-10: 0745331556
Publisher: Pluto Press
Publication Date: November 7th, 2012
Pages: 184
Language: English

"Neal Curtis boldly confronts the disturbing trap of contemporary democracy: its promises of diversity and plurality are undone by capitalist enclosure. Those brave enough to acknowledge not just capitalism's idiocy but the way it makes idiots of us will be grateful for this provocative, unyielding, and immensely readable book." – Jodi Dean, Professor of Political Science at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, and author of Democracy and Other Neoliberal Fantasies (2009).

"This book is a comprehensive overview of neoliberal folly and the ceaseless process of privatization, whose devastating effects are already evident in the pervasive wave of unemployment, precariousness, misery and despair which are changing European society. Neal Curtis's book describes how the spread of privatized stupidity, economic fanaticism and the cuts in education are provoking a rise of barbarianism and laying the foundations for a dictatorship of ignorance." – Franco Berardi, author of The Soul at Work: From Alienation to Autonomy (2009)