Summary of Seventeen Contradictions and the End of Capitalism

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Seventeen Contradictions and the End of Capitalism book summary
Professor David Harvey’s refreshing, fascinating Marxist perspective on global economics.


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Professor David Harvey uses Marxist theory to interpret capitalist society and details 17 “contradictions” he finds inherent in capitalism. He offers a well-developed argument, devoid of polemics, that points out the failings of the current economic system. This thought-provoking overview provides a refreshing perspective. Many academics, media commentators, economists and politicians reject any criticism of capitalism, but, Harvey says, they should address market bubbles, income inequality and the recessions that cause financial dislocation and economically inspired wars. His contradictions read more like descriptions of situations than like literal contrasts, but he poses interesting dilemmas. While always politically neutral, getAbstract recommends this book to those who want to discuss capitalism’s problems and possibilities.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How Marxism interprets capital,
  • What capitalism’s built-in issues are from a Marxist perspective and
  • What alternatives could solve capitalism’s problems.


Time to Re-Examine Capitalism
Recent economic problems reveal that capitalism has 17 inherent inconsistencies. Each “contradictions” warrants examination to spark debate about alternative economic policies. Consider capitalism’s “foundational contradictions,” the “constant features of ...
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About the Author

David Harvey, author of The Enigma of Capital, teaches anthropology at the City University of New York Graduate School. More than two million people have downloaded his course on Marx’s Capital.

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