The New Corporation: How Good Corporations Are Bad For Democracy

byJoel Bakan

Paperback | September 8, 2020

The New Corporation: How Good Corporations Are Bad For Democracy by Joel Bakan
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A brilliant follow up to the internationally bestselling The Corporation, with a new look inside the minds of corporations to see how they've changed and, most importantly, how they haven't.

In 2004, Joel Bakan released The Corporation, a seminal book and documentary of the same name, which diagnosed corporations as institutional psychopaths. In its wake, corporations began proclaiming they had changed. Newly committed to social purpose and eschewing narrow self-interest, they now had a conscience, they said, and were poised to become part of the solution to global ills, claiming they would reduce social and environmental harm and reorient themselves to solving the world's problems. The new corporation had emerged.

But, as it turned out, it was not fundamentally different. Legally programmed to prioritize its own best interests, like its predecessor, the new corporation was capable of doing good, but only in kinds and amounts that would help it do well; and it could refrain from doing bad, but not when doing bad was better than doing good for doing well. In short, the corporation's self-interested compulsions had not changed. It remained a psychopath--albeit a more charming one.

And with its new charm, the corporation set out to cajole governments to free it from regulation (claiming it could now be trusted to self-regulate) and grant it control over previously public domains (claiming it could now be entrusted with public interests). Societies began to change, now no longer just having corporations, but being, in all dimensions, corporate. The results were ruinous. Corporate crime and malfeasance hit all-time highs, democracy was hollowed out, inequality widened and deepened, climate change spiraled, and, of course, Donald Trump became president.

What, then, do we do? Joel Bakan's new book tells the updated history of corporations and the surging global resistance to them that has risen over the last fifteen years. Drawing from interviews with business and thought leaders, politicians, economists, activists, disruptors, and more, Bakan shines a light on the corporation of today: an entity that is somehow worse for trying to do better.
JOEL BAKAN is a professor of law at the University of British Columbia, and an internationally renowned legal scholar and commentator. A former Rhodes Scholar, he has law degrees from Oxford, Dalhousie, and Harvard and has worked on landmark legal cases and government policies. His critically acclaimed international hit, The Corporatio...
Title:The New Corporation: How Good Corporations Are Bad For DemocracyFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:240 pages, 8 X 5.19 X 0.66 inShipping dimensions:240 pages, 8 X 5.19 X 0.66 inPublished:September 8, 2020Publisher:Penguin CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0735238847

ISBN - 13:9780735238848

Appropriate for ages: All ages

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