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Volksheim oder Shopping Mall? Die Reproduktion der Gesellschaft im Dreieck von Markt, Sozialstruktur und Politik


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  • Streeck, Wolfgang
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    Flexible markets require flexible societies; humans, however, need a stable social order. According to received wisdom, when capitalist development razes traditional social structures, society fights back, and welfare state policies organize new stability to replace the old. More market produces more state. The present essay deals with the fertility crisis of modern societies in its relationship with both the expansion of labor markets and the change in family structures since the 1970s. It shows that traditional societies are fragile for their own reasons, without having to be subverted by expanding markets. Markets generate not just disorder but they also promise freedom. The end of the Fordist family was experienced not just as a loss but also as liberation. The decline of the standard employment relationship was paralleled by a decline of the standard family relationship, and with rising labor market participation by women, divorce rates increased while birth rates declined. Birth rates declined most where women are still required to be married in order to have children. The physical reproduction of contemporary modern societies depends on the choices of working women living with loose family ties. The social-democratic solution is the Scandinavian folkhemmet (people's home), where the traditional tasks of families are transferred to the welfare state. This is expensive, as is government provision of flexicurity in the labor market through active labor market policies. It may also provoke deep government intervention into the private lives of citizens. The alternative is the social model of the United States where the dysfunctions of the market are treated, not by government, but by further marketization: commercialization replaces state intervention. More market produces yet more market. -- Flexible Märkte verlangen flexible Sozialstrukturen, menschliches Leben aber braucht stabile Gesellschaften. Herrschende Lehre ist: Die kapitalistische Entwicklung zerschlägt traditionale Ordnungen, doch die Gesellschaft setzt sich zur Wehr, und wohlfahrtstaatliche Politik organisiert neue Sicherheit anstelle der alten. Mehr Markt bewirkt mehr Staat. Thema des Aufsatzes ist die Fertilitätskrise moderner Gesellschaften und ihr Zusammenhang mit der Expansion des Arbeitsmarktes und dem Wandel der Familienstrukturen seit den 1970er Jahren. Gezeigt wird, dass traditionale Ordnungen auch ohne Subversion durch expandierende Märkte fragil sind. Märkte erzeugen nicht nur Unordnung, sondern bieten auch Freiheit. Das Ende der fordistischen Familie wurde nicht nur als Ordnungsverlust erlebt, sondern auch als Befreiung. Parallel zum Normalarbeitsverhältnis zerfiel das Normalfamilienverhältnis, und mit steigender Erwerbstätigkeit der Frauen stiegen die Scheidungs- und sanken die Geburtenraten. Am größten war und ist der Rückgang der Kinderzahlen, wo Frauen verheiratet sein müssen, um Kinder haben zu können. Die physische Reproduktion moderner Gegenwartsgesellschaften kann nur durch berufstätige Frauen in lockeren Familienbindungen stattfinden. Die sozialdemokratische Lösung ist das skandinavische Volksheim, in dem die traditionellen Aufgaben stabiler Kernfamilien von der wohlfahrtsstaatlich verfassten Solidargemeinschaft übernommen werden. Das ist teuer, nicht anders als die staatliche Gewährleistung von flexicurity im Arbeitsmarkt durch aktive Arbeitsmarktpolitik, und verlockt zu tiefen staatlichen Interventionen in die Privatsphäre. Die Alternative ist das Gesellschaftsmodell der USA, das die Dysfunktionen des Marktes statt durch staatliche Politik durch immer weitere Vermarktlichung zu beheben sucht: Kommerzialisierung statt Verstaatlichung. Mehr Markt führt zu noch mehr Markt.

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    Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in its series MPIfG Working Paper with number 11/5.

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    Date of creation: 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:mpifgw:115

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    1. Ahn, N. & Mira, P., 1999. "A Note on the Changing Relationship Between Fertility and Female Employment Rates in Developed Countries," Papers 9903, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
    2. Streeck, Wolfgang & Mertens, Daniel, 2010. "Politik im Defizit: Austerität als fiskalpolitisches Regime," MPIfG Discussion Paper 10/5, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.
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