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Chapter Summary

This front matter section of this book titled Profitable Ideas: The Ideology of the Individual in Capitalist Development contains the table of contents and the acknowledgements. Scholarly attempts to explain the development of liberal individualism over the course of modern history have tended to focus on key principles and doctrines. The emergence and spread of individualist ideas has been scrutinised to an extent, but with insufficient attention to the manner in which they have been bound up with the opportunities and obstacles to accumulation at different stages of capitalist development. To this end the book shows that as the capitalist system develops, continuously generating new interests and societal conflicts, the theories, doctrines and moral precepts comprising liberal individualism change and evolve, while its vital social function is preserved.

Keywords: capitalist development; individualism; profitable idea



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