Vorwärts – und nichts vergessen

Die neue deutsche Sozialstaatsdebatte und die Dialektik sozialpolitischer Intervention

  • Stephan Lessenich
Schlagworte: Sozialstaat, Sozialpolitik, Deutschland, Kommodifizierung


The recent scientific debate on the functions of social policy and the transformation of the welfare state evidences an ever waning sense of the dialectics that lies at the core of modern state interventionism. The consequences of this decline of dialectical thinking on social policy matters are now beginning to affect as well the political discourse on the reform of the welfare state in Germany. This discourse is utterly dominated by onedimensional crisis scenarios and equally one-sided reform proposals, the latter opting for straightforward re-commodification strategies as opposed to the classical, post-war decommodification consensus. In this context, the paper constitutes a plea for regaining consciousness, conceptualizing social policy as what it is and always has been: the at a time specific and historically changing combination of commodifying and de-commodifying state interventions.


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Lessenich, S. (1999). Vorwärts – und nichts vergessen. PROKLA. Zeitschrift für Kritische Sozialwissenschaft, 29(116), 411-430. https://doi.org/10.32387/prokla.v29i116.806
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