Neoliberalism has brought out the worst in us
We tend to perceive our identities as stable and largely separate from outside forces. But over decades of research and therapeutic practice, I have become convinced that economic change is having a profound effect not only on our values but also on our personalities. Thirty years of neoliberalism, free-market forces and privatisation have taken their toll, as relentless pressure to achieve has become normative. If you’re reading this sceptically, I put this simple statement to you: meritocratic neoliberalism favours certain personality traits and penalises others. There are certain ideal characteristics needed to make a career today. The first is articulateness, the aim being to win over as many people as possible. It’s important to be able to talk up your own capacities as much as you can – you know a lot of people, you’ve got plenty of experience under your belt and you recently completed a major project. This description is, of course, a caricature taken to extremes.
Related: La Planète financière
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