The Market Order as Metaphysical Loot: Theology and the Contested Legitimacy of Consumer Capitalism

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The mechanism through which the ideology of market capitalism emerged has mostly been interpreted as part of an incremental, inevitable, and thus legitimate ousting of theological concepts from a public sphere that became organized around the principles of the Enlightenment as a secular project. This article stresses the illegitimate aspects of this process, that is the expropriation and re-appropriation of theological devices and ideas for what was merely an alternative political-theological project. This project, namely the establishment of the priesthood of the individualized ‘common man’, allowed for the mobilization of individual choice as a principle of social organization. The same process was responsible for underpinning the often unjust and illiberal market order with the vision of the world as an ordered and benign kosmos that emerged spontaneously from chaos.
The mechanism through which the ideology of market capitalism emerged has mostly been interpreted as part of an incremental, inevitable, and thus legitimate ousting of theological concepts from a public sphere that became organized around the principles of the Enlightenment as a secular project. This article stresses the illegitimate aspects of this process, that is the expropriation and re-appropriation of theological devices and ideas for what was merely an alternative political-theological project. This project, namely the establishment of the priesthood of the individualized ‘common man’, allowed for the mobilization of individual choice as a principle of social organization. The same process was responsible for underpinning the often unjust and illiberal market order with the vision of the world as an ordered and benign kosmos that emerged spontaneously from chaos.
LanguageEnglish
JournalOrganization
Volume19
Issue number3
Pages281-297
ISSN1350-5084
DOIs
StatePublished - 2012

Keywords

  • Carl Schmitt
  • Hans Blumenberg
  • History of Ideas
  • Markets
  • Market Ideology
  • Theology

Cite this

@article{a6bef52714ac4b9ca6dd45f397d38087,
title = "The Market Order as Metaphysical Loot: Theology and the Contested Legitimacy of Consumer Capitalism",
abstract = "The mechanism through which the ideology of market capitalism emerged has mostly been interpreted as part of an incremental, inevitable, and thus legitimate ousting of theological concepts from a public sphere that became organized around the principles of the Enlightenment as a secular project. This article stresses the illegitimate aspects of this process, that is the expropriation and re-appropriation of theological devices and ideas for what was merely an alternative political-theological project. This project, namely the establishment of the priesthood of the individualized ‘common man’, allowed for the mobilization of individual choice as a principle of social organization. The same process was responsible for underpinning the often unjust and illiberal market order with the vision of the world as an ordered and benign kosmos that emerged spontaneously from chaos.",
keywords = "Carl Schmitt, Hans Blumenberg, History of Ideas, Markets, Market Ideology, Theology",
author = "Stefan Schwarzkopf",
year = "2012",
doi = "10.1177/1350508412437618",
language = "English",
volume = "19",
pages = "281--297",
journal = "Organization",
issn = "1350-5084",
publisher = "Sage Publications Ltd.",
number = "3",

}

The Market Order as Metaphysical Loot : Theology and the Contested Legitimacy of Consumer Capitalism. / Schwarzkopf, Stefan.

In: Organization, Vol. 19, No. 3, 2012, p. 281-297.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Market Order as Metaphysical Loot

T2 - Organization

AU - Schwarzkopf,Stefan

PY - 2012

Y1 - 2012

N2 - The mechanism through which the ideology of market capitalism emerged has mostly been interpreted as part of an incremental, inevitable, and thus legitimate ousting of theological concepts from a public sphere that became organized around the principles of the Enlightenment as a secular project. This article stresses the illegitimate aspects of this process, that is the expropriation and re-appropriation of theological devices and ideas for what was merely an alternative political-theological project. This project, namely the establishment of the priesthood of the individualized ‘common man’, allowed for the mobilization of individual choice as a principle of social organization. The same process was responsible for underpinning the often unjust and illiberal market order with the vision of the world as an ordered and benign kosmos that emerged spontaneously from chaos.

AB - The mechanism through which the ideology of market capitalism emerged has mostly been interpreted as part of an incremental, inevitable, and thus legitimate ousting of theological concepts from a public sphere that became organized around the principles of the Enlightenment as a secular project. This article stresses the illegitimate aspects of this process, that is the expropriation and re-appropriation of theological devices and ideas for what was merely an alternative political-theological project. This project, namely the establishment of the priesthood of the individualized ‘common man’, allowed for the mobilization of individual choice as a principle of social organization. The same process was responsible for underpinning the often unjust and illiberal market order with the vision of the world as an ordered and benign kosmos that emerged spontaneously from chaos.

KW - Carl Schmitt

KW - Hans Blumenberg

KW - History of Ideas

KW - Markets

KW - Market Ideology

KW - Theology

U2 - 10.1177/1350508412437618

DO - 10.1177/1350508412437618

M3 - Journal article

VL - 19

SP - 281

EP - 297

JO - Organization

JF - Organization

SN - 1350-5084

IS - 3

ER -