In this paper Simon Glendinning analyzes the concept of neoliberalism in relation to classical liberalism within the context of modern European history. Glendinning contends that there are in fact a variety of neoliberalisms that have vied for power throughout Europe’s history, and that the period we now inhabit is best conceived in terms of the rise and dominance of a distinctively economic variation. With appeal to Husserl’s analysis of the modern European crisis, Glendinning argues that throughout this history our understanding of “man” has become increasingly “decentered.” Finally, echoing Plato’s call in The Republic for philosophical reason to govern, Glendinning identifies an opportunity now for a shift toward a kind of philosophical liberalism, though it’s one that he expects will be found highly contentious and perhaps even laughable today.
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Simon Glendinning is Professor of European Philosophy and Director of the Forum for European Philosophy at the London School of Economics. His research focuses on European and continental philosophy, especially phenomenology and deconstruction. Glendinning is the author of Derrida: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2011); In the Name of Phenomenology (Routledge, 2007); The Idea of Continental Philosophy (Edinburgh University Press, 2006); and On Being With Others: Heidegger–Derrida–Wittgenstein (Routledge, 1998). He has co-edited several collections of essays on Derrida and continental philosophy, and he has published a long list of articles, book chapters, and reviews.
Simon Glendinning, “Varieties of Neoliberalism,” Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 36:2 (2015), pp. 437–61.