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Simultaneous Transitions: Democratization, Neoliberalization, and Possibilities for Class Compromise in South Korea

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  • Wonik Kim

    (Department of Political Science, Louisiana State University, wkim@lsu.edu)

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to bring class compromise back into the study of South Korean political economy and present it as a possible alternative to the overwhelmingly one-sided neoliberal trajectory in South Korea. The process and conditions under which positive class compromise is acquired are identified in terms of the Polanyi-Gramsci nexus. This perspective suggests that the restoration of state-led developmentalism would be unfeasible under a democratic regime, while the implementation of a purely neoliberal blueprint may lead to unproductive class conflict. Employing this theoretical framework, I examine possibilities for positive class compromise in the context of the simultaneous transitions—democratization and neoliberalization—in South Korea. JEL classification: B5, H7, O53, P5

Suggested Citation

  • Wonik Kim, 2010. "Simultaneous Transitions: Democratization, Neoliberalization, and Possibilities for Class Compromise in South Korea," Review of Radical Political Economics, Union for Radical Political Economics, vol. 42(4), pages 505-527, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:reorpe:v:42:y:2010:i:4:p:505-527
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    Keywords

    class compromise; neoliberalism; democratization; developmental state; Polanyi; Gramsci;

    JEL classification:

    • B5 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Current Heterodox Approaches
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East
    • P5 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems

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