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Debt: New and Old European Ties

Lecture by Jens Beckert

Fictional Expectations: Growth and Crisis in the European Debt Crunch


The sociologist Jens Beckert demonstrates how fictional expectations played a key role in the economic collapse of Europe.

Far from being an exact science subject to objective and computable rules, economics is governed by a host of non-rational factors. The functioning of markets, based on expectations for the future which are less plausible than we think, also draws on emotional impulses derived from images and prejudices that have been forged over time. Jens Beckert, director of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in Cologne, will analyse the Greek sovereign debt crisis and the expectations that influenced it. What role did the imaginaries and perceptions of the key players with regard to others play in this situation? How has the debt crisis changed relations between the countries of the “North” and “South”?

Presenters: Peter Wagner

Participants: Jens Beckert

This activity is part of Debt: New and Old European Ties

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