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Taxing Subjects: An Anthropology of DeKeynesinization

Taxing Subjects: An Anthropology of DeKeynesinization

Monday, September 24, 2012

Wenner-Gren Foundation

Presented By

Presented by the Anthropology Section


This public lecture explores how the concepts of "deKeynesinization" and "taxpayer identity politics" help make sense of the contours and resonance of right-wing politics in the U.S. today. The velocity of Tea Party activism that astonished many observers in 2009 was less surprising to scholars whose research has examined the history and/or varieties of anti-tax activism in the U.S. since the 1970s. I situate the political salience and production of taxpayer resentments and identities in the larger agenda of deKeynesinization. I use this concept to highlight and theorize the destructive dimensions of neoliberalization, i.e., the political project of undermining the assumptions, policies and institutions of the liberal, Keynesian state. Drawing on my and others' research on tax politics, and on battles over public employee compensation and collective bargaining rights, I demonstrate how both the subject of taxes and taxpayer subjectivities provide valuable lenses through which to understand contested meanings and values about social provisioning, the public sector, and the State in contemporary politics.

A reception will precede the meeting at 6:00 pm.


Sandra Morgen

University of Oregon

This meeting is free, but registration is required.

Travel & Lodging

Meeting Location

The Wenner-Gren Foundation

470 Park Avenue South, between 31st and 32nd Streets
8th Floor
New York, NY 10016