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Headlines of Nation, Subtexts of Class
Working Class Populism and the Return of the Repressed in Neoliberal Europe
Edited by Don Kalb and Gábor Halmai
240 pages, bibliog., index
ISBN 978-0-85745-203-0 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (September 2011)
eISBN 978-0-85745-204-7 eBook
“This is an excellent volume…[that] offers major theoretical and ethnographic insights not just with reference to neoliberal processes but also to the general understanding of state transformations…The overall theme of the book – the importance of bringing class back into anthropological concerns - and a shift away from culturalist/essentialist understandings (especially in relation to nationalism) is well-taken and developed. The book will be a major contribution towards reasserting the importance of an attention to class-based discussion.” · Bruce Kapferer, University of Bergen
“[A] must-read. In the best tradition of Eric Wolf and Sydney Mintz, this book is a powerful example of the anthropological rethinking of class analysis that is necessary for grasping the contradictions of post-Cold War globalization. With Kalb’s penetrating introductory essay and the urban case studies from across Europe, it addresses one of the most challenging issues of our time - the power of the new right.” · Ida Susser, Hunter College and Graduate Center of the City University of New York
“[A]n extremely responsible engagement with the important issues of our time. It is throbbing with relevance and edgy in its provocations. Kalb’s introductory essay is a tour de force, which shows how the various contributions add up to more than the sum of the parts. It will secure a wide readership in the social sciences, history, and cultural studies.” · Gavin Smith, University of Toronto
Since 1989 neo-nationalism has grown as a volatile political force in almost all European societies in tandem with the formation of a neoliberal European Union and wider capitalist globalizations. Focusing on working classes situated in long-run localized processes of social change, including processes of dispossession and disenfranchisement, this volume investigates how the experiences, histories, and relationships of social class are a necessary ingredient for explaining the re-emergence and dynamics of populist nationalism in both Eastern and Western Europe. Featuring in-depth urban and regional case studies from Romania, Hungary, Serbia, Italy and Scotland this volume reclaims class for anthropological research and lays out a new interdisciplinary agenda for studying identity politics in the intensifying neoliberal conjuncture.
Don Kalb is Professor of Sociology and Social Anthropology at Central European University, Budapest, and Senior Researcher at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. His books include Expanding Class: Power and Everyday Politics in Industrial Communities, The Netherlands, 1850-1950 (Duke University Press 1997); The Ends of Globalization. Bringing Society back in, (ed., Rowman and Littlefield 2000); Globalization and Development: Key Issues and Debates (ed., Kluwer Academic 2004); Critical Junctions: Anthropology and History beyond the Cultural Turn (ed., Berghahn Books 2005). He is the founding editor of Focaal – Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology.
Gábor Halmai is a PhD candidate at the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Central European University in Budapest, finalizing a doctoral project that is a comparative investigation into two collective struggles against semi-peripheral “transitions,” namely the nationalist movement in Hungary and the socialist MST in Brazil.