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Jaar 2019 x
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Access_open Voorbij de controverse: het Nederlandse neoliberalisme als onderwerp van onderzoek

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden Neoliberalism, The Netherlands, Intellectual history, Political history, Essentially contested concepts
Auteurs Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen en Dr. Bram Mellink
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The word neoliberalism has often been the object of fierce controversy in the Dutch public debate. Prominent intellectuals have equated neoliberalism with extremism and fundamentalism, with some going as far as calling it a ‘totalitarian faith’. The opposite camp in the debate has argued that neoliberalism is largely a self-invented bogeyman of the left, a swearword used by critics to engage in an intellectual witch-hunt. Of course, neoliberalism is not the only social science term suffering from a polemical status. Common concepts such as populism, socialism, nationalism or conservatism have given rise to similar lasting disagreements and comparable accusations of their derogatory use. What does appear to be exceptional about neoliberalism in the Dutch debate, is that very few conceptual and historical studies have been published on the subject. While the word neoliberalism is commonly employed in Dutch mainstream social science, many scholars seem to use the term without much further qualification. This paper explores the controversy and looks for ways to proceed beyond it. Drawing on a recent wave of international scholarship, it outlines an ideational approach to neoliberalism. After tracing the origins of the term neoliberalism, it closes with a preliminary example of an ideational analysis of Dutch neoliberalism.


Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen
Dr. Merijn Oudenampsen is Postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Maatschappij- en Gedragswetenschappen, Programmagroep: Geographies of Globalizations.

Dr. Bram Mellink
Dr. Bram Mellink is postdoc onderzoeker aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam, Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Capaciteitsgroep Geschiedenis.
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