Mimesis, scapegoating and financial crises: a critical evaluation of René Girard’s intellectual legacy

REVELEY, James and SINGLETON, John (2019). Mimesis, scapegoating and financial crises: a critical evaluation of René Girard’s intellectual legacy. Science and Society, 83 (4), 469-494.

[img] PDF
Singleton-MimesisScapegoatingFinancial(AM).pdf - Accepted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only until 1 April 2020.
All rights reserved.

Download (298kB)
Official URL: https://guilfordjournals.com/doi/abs/10.1521/siso....
Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1521/siso.2019.83.4.469

Abstract

René Girard’s pathbreaking work, especially on mimetic (imitative) thought and behavior, can be used to reinforce Marxist explanations of financial crisis. Yet Girard’s concept of the scapegoat mechanism is less applicable to the modern world, and failure to recognize this can lead to confusion. A prime example is the contribution of the neo-Marxist scholar Henri Guénin-Paracini and his co-authors, who hold that the same mechanism Girard identified as existing in ancient times reconciles workers to contemporary capitalism’s financial crisis tendencies. A close analysis of their argument reveals that this mechanism explains nothing about post-crisis social reproduction. Nevertheless, Girardian cognizance of scapegoating and the persecutory impulse is useful in ensuring that resistance to financialization is depersonalized. Girard’s theory of mimesis, however, can contribute to a systemic account of factors leading to financial crises. In particular, his mimetic theory has the potential to bridge Keynesian and Marxist explanations of why such crises occur.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Mimesis, scapegoating and financial crises: a critical evaluation of René Girard’s intellectual legacy, James Reveley and John Singleton. ©2019. ©Guilford Press. Reprinted with permission of The Guilford Press.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1701 Psychology; 1702 Cognitive Science; 2202 History And Philosophy Of Specific Fields; Social Psychology; Political Science & Public Administration
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1521/siso.2019.83.4.469
Page Range: 469-494
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2018 17:00
Last Modified: 30 Oct 2019 12:28
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/23397

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics