Neoliberalism, Alienation, Alternative Facts and Fake News

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 08:30-10:20
RC36 Alienation Theory and Research (host committee)

Language: English

Following 40 years of neoliberalism, the IMF's research department declared neoliberlism to be a failure. Ostry, Loungani, and Furceri stated in their report that "Instead of delivering growth, some neoliberal policies have increased inequality, in turn jeopardizing durable expansion." The UN also recently stated that "The world faces the largest humanitarian crisis since the end of the Second World War with more than 20 million people in four countries facing starvation and famine." Nevertheless, most Western countries refuse to increase their UN payments, with the US President setting a model by cutting the social welfare and foreign aid budgets while calling for very large increases in the military and "homeland security" budgets. Alienated unemployed and elderly workers, feeling excluded and ignored, have lost hope in the future for themselves and their families. They voted in large numbers for Trump's promises, but have already been threatened by reductions in their healthcare programs.

Harvey conceptualized neoliberalism as "Creative Destruction," but we may instead describe its current phase as disastrous distraction. Today's populist, authoritarian, and fundamentalist neolibralism is determined to continue wealth accumulation by its 1% and ban wealth distribution for its 99%. This recalls socialization in accordance with Social Darwinist rules, analogous to the TV reality of Trump's "The Apprentice." However, when the 99% seek to grasp the real, they are doomed to the consumption of alternative facts and fake news that conceal the bitter world of solid facts and objective news. This session welcomes the discussion of relevant scenarios and cases.
Session Organizer:
Miri GAL-EZER, Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee, Israel
Nikolay ZAKHAROV, Södertörn University, Sweden
Maya SHMIDT, National Research University — the Higher School of Economics, Russia
Oral Presentations
Faking the Media Ecosystem
Lilia RAYCHEVA, The St. Kliment Ohridski Sofia University, Bulgaria; Nadezda MITEVA, The St. Kliment Ohridsky Sofia University, Bulgaria
Platform Activists: Competing or Reiterating Dominant Social, Cultural Forms and Material Relations of Production?
Athina KARATZOGIANNI, University of Leicester, United Kingdom; Jacob MATTHEWS, Paris 8, France
Migration Speeches and Hate Speeches. the Sociological View on Migrants’ Representations between News and Ugcs in Europe
Silvia PEZZOLI, University of Florence, Italy; Letizia MATERASSI, University of Florence, Italy