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Solving the paradox of mass investment: expertise, financial inclusion and inequality in the politics of credit

Simone Polillo

Review of Social Economy, 2020, vol. 78, issue 1, 53-76

Abstract: The Ownership Society of the late twentieth century was grounded on the promise that the opening of new investment opportunities would lead to financial expansion and inclusion. It resulted, instead, in mass dispossession. In this paper, I analyze the politics of credit in order to theorize the nexus between finance and inequality, and specifically to understand whether financial inclusion can create opportunities for what we might call ‘financial citizenship.’ Looking at processes, internal to the financial system itself, that may give rise to the paradox of mass investment and increased inequality, and proposing a general model of the modalities through which the financial system engages with its customers, are my two main goals.

Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1080/00346764.2019.1669810

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