David Harvey on the Contradictions of Capitalism (Heinz Leitner)

Harvey identified three contradictions of capitalism. The first contradiction of capitalism is the difficulty of keeping compounding growth going because capital is finding it difficult to find profitable outlets for all that compound growth. Where’s it going to go? What’s it going to do?

The other contradiction is the pace of technology, which is actually removing labour from having very much significance in the dynamics of capitalism.

The third contradiction is something called universal alienation. This refers to a disconnect between the way that most people are thinking and the political process. There is a disconnect between people’s sense of identity and the kinds of jobs they do. This widespread alienation in the world of technology is in part because technology is beginning to remove labour from having a creative and direct involvement in the labour process.


Editor’s Note: In 2010, Prof. Harvey also visited the RSA where he delivered a lecture on „The Crises of Capitalism“. His input was wonderfully animated by the RSA. Watch it here.Read more articles filed under Videos. 

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