Commodification and Desire
Capitalism has been, and still is, a remarkable desiring machine. Flows of money, flows of the means of production, flows of man-power, and flows of new markets: all desire in flux. This chapter examines the many contingencies that give birth to capitalism to realize how inseparable from the phenomena of desire are its infrastructure and economy, and the extent to which it is a criss-crossing of desires. In such a society, there is a shift from government to markets and the emergence of a more intensified political economy organized around three principle concerns: deregulated markets, commodification, and disposability turning citizens into consumers while privatizing and commodifying every aspect of the social order all the while threatening the lives, health, and livelihoods of millions of working-class and middle-class people. Like the villages of pre-modern times with the church as the center, postmodern suburbs or rural communities with the malls or Wal-Mart as their center are the present small-town life.