The maladies of social capital I: the missing 'capital' in theories of social capital

Alex Law, Gerry Mooney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)


Social capital is a concept that is widely celebrated by the governing institutions of neo-liberal capitalism. Under the veneer of making social relations central to public discourse social capital obscures the extent to which social life is being made to submit to capital accumulation. First, we describe the hegemony of social capital as a veritable panacea for social de-composition from the political left in the work of Pierre Bourdieu to the middling conservatism of US thinkers such as Coleman and Putnam. In contrast, the original Marxist notion of social capital leads us to argue for abandoning the orthodox conception of social capital.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-143
Number of pages17
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2006


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