In this classic work of economic history and social theory, Karl Polanyi analyzes the economic and social changes brought about by the “great transformation” of the Industrial Revolution. His analysis explains not only the deficiencies of the self-regulating market but the potentially dire social consequences of untempered market capitalism. New introductory material reveals the renewed importance of Polanyi’s seminal analysis in an era of globalization and free trade.
Karl Polanyi’s “The Great Transformation” is generally acclaimed as being among the most influential works of economic history in the twentieth century, and remains as vital in the current historical conjuncture as it was in his own. In its critique of nineteenth-century “market fundamentalism,” it reads as a warning to our own neoliberal age, and is widely touted as a prophetic guidebook for those who aspire to understand the causes and dynamics of global economic turbulence.