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Hyper-globalization and capitalism: socio-political effects of the international economy

Antonio Russo (Department of Political Science, University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy)

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy

ISSN: 0144-333X

Article publication date: 19 June 2020

Issue publication date: 26 May 2021




The hypothesis is that social inequalities tend to increase in the historical phases characterized by a high level of integration of the international economy, generating protectionism-oriented pressures. The analysis of the capitalistic evolution in the last centuries is oriented to outline the strict connection between deep international economy integration and high level of social inequalities in advanced economies.


Recent deep integration in international economy generated, in advanced economies, a significant increase in socio-economic inequalities, with negative effects on social cohesion and democratic dynamics. The paper, examining the historical evolution of capitalism, analyses the consequences generated by the deep integration, achieved by the international economy, on social inequalities in advanced countries. The discussion is focussed on three models of capitalism: competitive capitalism, Fordist capitalism and cognitive capitalism.


As a result, for governments, two alternatives open up in the hyper-globalization phases: to preserve deep international economic integration, with risks for democracy; to preserve internal social cohesion, with risks of protectionism and closure to the international economy.


The article is oriented to underline the intrinsic incompatibility between hyper-globalization and democracy, for the strong negative effects generated by hyper-globalization on social inequalities and on social cohesion.



Russo, A. (2021), "Hyper-globalization and capitalism: socio-political effects of the international economy", International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 41 No. 5/6, pp. 584-596.



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