Capitalist Realism: Is there No Alternative (Short Review)


Mark Fisher masters not just one specialty but his ideologies, expression and work in a range of fields continues to be of much importance and theoretical as well as practical significance. He has proved himself as a musician, writer and a teacher. Having these diverse experiences and exposure, he relates his learnings and interpretations of every field into his text in Capitalist Realism. His understanding of fields of Music, Media and Education allow him to relate the outcomes of these fields to the text at numerous occasions. The text highlights flaws and adverse affects of the Capital and Capitalism to social well being, in order for the masses to be able to break away from Capitalist Realism.

The book does not implicitly provide an alternative or a solution to the problems of Capitalist Realism but it intends to combat the feeling and perception of people of there existing no other alternative to capitalism despite of all its adverse affects. The book takes shape of a critique towards Capitalism. By the end the author shows confidence in instilling more power and belief in the political systems rather than capital ones. Although, the book misses out on all the positive outcomes brought about by the capitalism itself, it also lacked the complete understanding of innovation itself because of which the text seem to contradict itself at a point.

I have been pondering on an alternative framework to function into that yields efficiency and does not compromise so much on the social welfare as does the capitalism. The author with his critique just tries to fight the feeling of capitalist realism: there being no other alternative, and to enable the readers to unhabituate from what they have become enslaved to and think openly about new ideas, frameworks etc that might be put to work- This in itself is innovation at a broader level, although he seems to be against the concept of innovation within firms in shape of customization and rejects that as being innovation in real terms. I strongly agree with the objective of the book of trying to think beyond the submissive boundaries of capitalism or of any other framework for that reason. And like it says in the book itself: within every crisis is an opportunity!

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