The Struggle for the Good Society: Rudolf Hilferding, Ludwig von Mises, and Walter Lippmann, and the Advent of Neoliberalism as Self-Criticism and Self-Defense of Liberal Governmental Style from 1896 to 1938




Higgins, John Patrick

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Despite the growing proliferation of literature on neoliberalism much of it has been used uncritically and asymmetrically across political divides that seek to confront the hegemony of the United States and Western capitalist nations in the latter half of the 20th century, or within the broader outlines of Foucauldian governmental style which focuses on governmental reasoning and institutions. This paper contends that neoliberalism actually is a much broader phenomenon resulting from the struggles and failures of historical liberalism and capitalism from the turn of the century and that the philosophical and ideological milieus of the late Hapsburg Empire and failures of democratic socialism as well as laissez-faire liberalism are important contributors to the advent of neoliberalism that have been largely overlooked. This paper turns away from the institutional level to look more closely at the interplay of individuals and their ideas and focuses on the Austro-Marxist Rudolf Hilferding, the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, and American philosopher and journalist Walter Lippmann leading up to the Walter Lippmann Colloquium in Paris in 1938 wherein the term neoliberalism was first coined.



Neoliberalism, Walter Lippman, Rudolf Hilferding, Ludwig von Mises, Austro-Marxism, Austrian School of Economics