Zombie Capitalism and its Discontents: the economics and politics of austerity
Since the economic crash of 2008 austerity has been imposed by politicians and bankers, but increasingly the need for austerity is being questioned. This course studies the impact of austerity on people, political parties, as well as economic theories.
To explore the impact of austerity, look at competing economic explanations, discuss its political and economic consequences, and seek solutions to the ongoing economic crisis.
Who is the course for?
An interest in the subject
What topics will this course cover
1. Economic theories and practice; Monetarism, Keynesianism, Marxism, Neoliberalism, Corbynomics, and theories of inequality. 2. History and consequence of previous economic crisis. 3. Current protest movements against austerity, the electoral and political consequences, as well as alternative economic models. 4. An examination of resources from the archives at the People's History Museum.
What will it be like?
WEA classes are friendly and supportive. You will be encouraged to work together with your fellow students and tutor. You will be asked to share your ideas and views in the class and work with the group to give and accept feedback in a supportive environment. The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you to be actively involved in your learning. You may be asked to undertake work to support your course outside of your class.
By the end of the course I should be able to:
1. Outline the different economic explanations for economic crisis. 2. Consider the impact of austerity on the people, as well as the people’s responses. 3. Consider the impact of austerity on politics and on political parties. 4. Discuss alternatives to the economics of austerity. 5. Examined the relevant resources at the People’s History Museum.
How will I know I'm making progress?
Oral tutor feedback for individuals, as well as the group. Written feedback on interim self-assessment forms.
What else do I need to know, do or bring?
Nothing needed. Printed hand outs with readings will be provided for all. There will be email newsletter updates with links.
Reading and information sources
What could the course lead to?
A better understanding of the economics and politics of austerity. Further WEA courses on similar or other subjects