Sunday Meeting – Colleen Eren – Bernie Madoff and The Crisis: The Public Trial of Capitalism
Sunday, January 28, 2018 at 11:00 am
Ceremonial Hall – 4th floor
At the 10 year anniversary of both Bernie Madoff’s arrest and the Financial Crisis of 2008, sociologist Colleen Eren discusses her new book (Stanford University Press, 2017) Bernie Madoff and the Crisis: The Public Trial of Capitalism. Colleen goes beyond purely investigative accounts to examine how and why Madoff became the epicenter of public fury and titillation. Rooting her argument in critical sociology, she analyzes media coverage of this landmark case alongside original interviews with dozens of journalists and editors involved in the reportage, the SEC Director of Public Affairs, and Bernie Madoff himself. Turning the mirror back onto society, she locates Madoff within a broader reckoning about free market capitalism. She argues that our ideological and cultural tendencies to attribute blame to individuals—be they regulators, victims, or “monsters” like Madoff—distracts us from more systemic critiques. Bernie Madoff and the Crisis offers fresh insight into the 2008 crisis, whether we have come to terms with it, and what we have yet to gain from the case of the century.
Colleen Eren holds a PhD in Sociology and is an Associate Professor and Program Director in the Criminal Justice Program of CUNY LaGuardia Community College. For over five years she was Director of Organizing at New Yorkers for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, which led a successful statewide campaign to keep capital punishment out of New York.
Presider: Anne Klaeysen