The Current Global Crisis and the Working of Capitalism



One of the most important economic problems of our age must be the great world depression with its impact on socio-political orders from the end of 1973. There have certainly been shorter cycles of downswing and upswing in business activities during this period. There occurred upswings in 1976–9 and in 1983–8 after the preceding downswings of 1974–5 and 1979–83. The daily concerns of business circles, journalists and politicians are apt to be concentrated on these shorter business cycles, and tend to emphasise every upturn as if it were the end of all economic difficulties. However, it is both misleading and erroneous to neglect the continuous keynote of a great depression in the capitalist world. Without being analysed against the background of this keynote, it would be difficult consistently to understand the specific natures of each shorter cycle, and especially of the worsening economic situation in downswings as well as of the feeble and uneven character of the recovery.


Business Cycle Real Wage Capital Accumulation Late Nineteenth Century Great Depression 
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Copyright information

© Makoto Itoh 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TokyoJapan

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