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Sociologist interested in political economy, economics, neoliberalism and contemporary politics.
Recent Activity
I have recently set up a new website at . All my articles and other outputs are now collected there. Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2017 at potlatch
Since the Brexit referendum result on 24th June, I've written a series of blogposts and articles trying to make sense of this crisis for the UK, both its antecedents and implications. I've collected these below, and will continue to add... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2016 at potlatch
It is relatively obvious, I'd have thought, that talent shows and reality television rest on a format that has been found (or at least felt) across a range of economic institutions over the past 30 years. The critical event in... Continue reading
Posted Nov 26, 2015 at potlatch
I've been reading about cybernetics recently for the first time, for reasons to do with the research project on 'data dashboards' I'm working on with colleagues at Warwick. I can see that there are various ways in which my happiness... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2015 at potlatch
The great mystery of our present behaviorist-digital moment, with all of its attendent surveillance, constraints and cultural impoverishments, is the question of why we not only submit to it, but actively embrace it. Given that Western societies continue to conceive... Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2015 at potlatch
I'm going to be in the US for the first week of June, for a few events where I'll be discussing my forthcoming book, The Happiness Industry. All the details of where and when are on the Verso website here.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2015 at potlatch
For those blissfully absent from the twitter-sphere, I have a new book out in May (and since you're such twitter refuseniks, you're probably still neurologically capable of reading such things). It's called The Happiness Industry: How the Government and Big... Continue reading
Posted Apr 2, 2015 at potlatch
If death used to be a 'great career move' for rockstars - if only that were still the case - it is hard to escape the sense that being axed is now a 'great career move' for the mega-celebrities, who... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2015 at potlatch
I have a new piece in openDemocracy, exploring cultural and economic transitions, via the shift from a society of cigarettes to one of smartphones. Here's a chunk: ...on a deeper psychological and cultural level, the difference between these two framing... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2015 at potlatch
In case I haven't already tweeted about it enough, I've been in the process of setting up a new Political Economy Research Centre (PERC) at Goldsmiths over the last few months, together with some great colleagues. PERC sits alongside our... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2015 at potlatch
Last week I was a guest on Novara FM, to discuss neoliberalism with Aaron Bastani. You can listen to the show here. In case that's not enough neoliberalism discussion, I gave a talk on a similar topic of 'what is... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2015 at potlatch
I have a piece in The New Inquiry, entitled 'The Data Sublime', exploring the strange everyday appeal of technologies of surveillance and control. My tentative hypothesis is that there is something psychoanalytic going on here, involving the desire to be... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2015 at potlatch
Every sector, every profession, which can plausibly lay a claim to the 'public interest', is currently resisting austerity in one simple fashion: claiming that by hitting the sector or profession concerned, the real losers will be the public. Ironically the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2014 at potlatch
I strongly recommend the economic sociology blog, Estudios de la Economia, run by Jose Ossandon and Tomas Undurraga. One of the nice things about the interviews they publish is how they break the questions down, and upload each answer separately,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2014 at potlatch
The LSE Impact Blog have been hosting a debate on the future of the social sciences, in anticipation of this event tomorrow evening, with Nicholas Christakis, whose article on the need to 'shake up' the social sciences made a bit... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2014 at potlatch
As part of the slow-burning promotion of my book, a couple of discussions have been published in recent weeks, exploring the book's arguments. Firstly, New Left Project published a two-part interview I did with Tom Mills, one of their editors.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2014 at potlatch
When it comes to the cultural injunctions of the Guardian and Radio 4, I'm pretty obedient. In the past couple of weeks, I've seen Richard Linklater's film Boyhood and ploughed through most of the second volume of Karl Ove Knausgaard's... Continue reading
Posted Aug 4, 2014 at potlatch
The Big Ideas event I spoke at on 'What is neoliberalism?' on Tuesday night turned out to be great fun, with unusually good questions and contributions from the audience. In case anybody would like to listen, here is a recording.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2014 at potlatch
I'll be speaking at the next Big Ideas event, at the Wheatsheaf pub, 25 Rathbone Place, London, at 8pm on Tuesday 29th July. These events are organised by Andrew McGettigan, and take place on the last Tuesday of every month,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2014 at potlatch
As mentioned here before, I am one of the Co-Investigators on an ESRC Seminar Series, 'Spaces of Evidence', which explores various types of evidence (such as Randomised Controlled Trials) which are at work in policy, management and elite decision-making today.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 26, 2014 at potlatch
If you'll excuse the Krapp's Last Blogpost splintered chronicity, I wrote a blogpost just before Christmas, which I then opted not to publish, on grounds that it was even too pretentiously curmudgeonly for me. 'How the hell can that be?',... Continue reading
Posted Jun 23, 2014 at potlatch
I've published a new piece at the LSE Politics and Policy blog, 'How 'competitiveness' became one of the great unquestioned virtues of contemporary culture'. The argument won't be much of a surprise to any regular readers of this blog! Here... Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2014 at potlatch
I'm having a launch for my book, which is out next week. It's happening from 6-8pm on 10th June at Goldsmiths, with a discussion, some free booze and copies of the book available for a miniscule £20! To find out... Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2014 at potlatch
As I've mentioned a couple of times here already, I have a book coming out in May. It's called The Limits of Neoliberalism: Authority, Sovereignty & the Logic of Competition. It brings together quite a bit of my thinking on... Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2014 at potlatch
My latest output via the Theory Culture & Society website is a bibliographic review of the concept of 'neoliberalism'. The essay introduces the notion via a number of sub-headings, with a short list of relevant literature for each. Hopefully this... Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2014 at potlatch