Rent, Asset Value and the Politics of Patriarchy

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CGD member Dr Charlie Dannreuther, lecturer in European Political Economy, presented this talk as part of the School of Politics and International Studies’ Research Seminar series:

Abstract

How has assetization, “the rendering of resources into new tradable income streams through processes of enclosure”, changed the way we value our lives, things and livelihoods? How has the protection of asset values changed political preference? Drawing from Kuwait as an exemplar, we establish some of the key features of rent circulation, social conservatism and state policy that characterise rentier states to show how the growth of interest in asset categories in recent years has changed the circulation of rent in the UK. Assets retain their value through the circulation of rent through rights that define political community and preference. As assets come under greater usage, or as communities start to become less cohesive, pressure to reinforce asset value is reinforced in conservative political agendas. Thus more patriarchy in patriarchal systems, more class in class based systems. The argument is illustrated by juxtaposing the experiences of Kuwait with those of the UK.