Capitalism dominates economies all over the world and is a key force in the process of globalization. What makes it such a uniquely dynamic social and economic force, however, is open to debate. The essays in this book take up this issue, offering theories on both what encourages and what blocks capitalism.
In On Capitalism leading economists, sociologists, and political scientists develop ideas and insights into the dynamic of capitalism as a global economic order. Unlike studies that focus only on localized descriptions of what has made capitalism function in a specific place, these essays examine the general mechanisms that account for dynamic or rational capitalism. As each chapter shows, the mechanisms motivating and facilitating today’s global capitalism are not rooted in the materialist domain of incremental capital accumulation, but in the realm of ideas and institutional structures. Taken as a whole, these essays offer a rich account of the interconnectedness of the economic, political, and religious institutions of modern capitalism.