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Title: A culture of mania: a psychoanalytic view of the incubation of the 2008 credit crisis
Authors: Stein, Mark
First Published: Mar-2011
Publisher: Sage
Citation: Organization, 2011, 18 (2), pp. 173-186.
Abstract: In this theoretically informed study I explore the broader cultural changes that created the conditions for the credit crisis of 2008. Drawing on psychoanalysis and its application to organizational and social dynamics, I develop a theoretical framework around the notion of a manic culture, comprised of four aspects: denial; omnipotence; triumphalism; and over-activity. I then apply this to the credit crisis and argue that the events of 2008 were preceded by an incubation period lasting for over two decades during which a culture of mania developed. Then, focusing especially on the Japanese and South East Asia/LTCM crises, I argue that a series of major ruptures in capitalism during this incubation period served not as warnings, but as opportunities for a manic response, thereby dramatically increasing the risks involved. I also argue that this mania was triggered and strengthened by triumphant feelings in the West over the collapse of communism. I suggest therefore that this manic culture played a significant role in creating the conditions for the problems that led to the credit crisis.
ISSN: 1350-5084 (Print)
1461-7323 (Online)
Type: Article
Description: The full text of this article is not currently available on the LRA. The published version is available from the publisher's website at: ; doi: 10.1177/1350508410390071
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Management

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