Capitalists against Markets: The Making of Labor Markets and Welfare States in the United States and Sweden

Challenges the conventional wisdom that welfare state builders take their cues solely from labor and other progressive interests. It argues instead that pragmatic social reformers in the U.S. and Sweden looked for support from above as well as below, taking into account capitalists’ interests and preferences in the political process. Legislation associated with the American New Deal and Swedish social democracy was built, consequently, on cross‐class alliances of interest. Capitalists in both countries appreciated the regulatory impact of reformist social and labor legislation. Their interests in such legislation derived from their distinct systems of labor market governance. Thus, new theory and historical evidence in this book illuminate the political conditions for greater equality and security in capitalist societies.

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