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Lecture

GGR221 Lec 4

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Department
Geography
Course
GGR221H1
Professor
Deborah Leslie
Semester
Winter

Description
Lec 4 Post-war wave (Fordism) January-27-14 1:02 PM Fordism and French Regulation Theory - Ford pioneered an automobile system - Explore how crisis tendencies in capitalism are contained - e.g. crisis to produce more - Drive down wages - reducing market locally - Argument: there is inheret tendencies that must be resolved over time - Examine industrial development in post-war period or 'wave' 1945-1995 "Fordism" - Fordism = post-war boom, or 'golden age' ○ No era was as prosperous as this ○ In USA and CAN The French Regulation School - First developed in the 1970s and 1980s - French economists such as Aglietta, Lipietz, and Boyer ○ Key thinkers - Michel Aglietta ○ Economic crisis (book) - Alain Lipietz ○ Green capitalism - Capitalism is characterized by fundamental contradictions, that often need to be resolved - How does capitalism resolve inherent crisis tendencies and achieve long periods of growth and stability? - Regime of Accumulation: long term stabilization between production and consumption ○ Consensus between production and total volume of goods, kinds of goods produced, goods referring to all the goods and services produced (consumer goods, machinery) ○ Over time there tends to be long sensus ○ Consumption and demand - Mode of Regulation: set of internalized rules and social procedures which hold a regime together ○ Important actors: state, government ○ Matching production and consumption is their job ○ Laws, norms, mores, values, forms, government intervention, family, other institutions ○ Regulation is essential to stability over time ○ Harold Innis also stresses how institutions, and that they matter! - Major crisis indicate that a mode of regulation is not adequate to a regime of accumulation (outdates forms of regulation) or potential of regime of accumulation exhaustion - Crisis = mode of regulation is out of date, or regime of accumulation is exhausted (industry and methods of production is no longer in use) - Stability is achieved through institutions - These must be resolved or suppressed for successful accumulation - Mode of regulation evolves differently in different places and nations - Regimes of accumulation and modes of regulation are chance discoveries - People struggles - Period after 1945 referred to as "Fordism" (Antonio Gramsci) ○ Post-war period, system of organization that became predominant ○ Mode of industrial involvement changed people's way of life ○ Industrial system changed all aspects of our life - The Fordist regime of accumulation: ○ Production and consumption and organization of both a) Mass production - Large scale production of products - Products are manufactured according to 'economy of scale' (instead of small batches, large-scale productions and long runs of standardized commodities - commodities that were all the same, cheaper this way) - Cost of products are brought down, cheapen for market - Large inventories (Just-In-Case) - Horizontal and vertical integration □ Horizontal = market conditions that ologopoly or monopoly (dominated by small group) - Leading sectors: automobile production, transport equipment, steel, petrochemicals, synthetic materials, electrical goods - Big firms - Introduction of Taylorism* □ How are the goods being made? □ In post-war period, particular system emerged □ Frederick Taylor (a management consultant), 1911, Principles of Scientific Management □ Separation conception and execution □ Increasing the division of labor □ Time motion studies (use scientific studies to find the best and most efficient way to do a task) □ However, crisis of over-production 1930s □ Always striving to reduce waves □ Replace workers with technology □ Production outpace consumption (activity level increase, but consumption decrease) □ Final demand did not keep pace with rise in productivity □ Depression in 1930 could be said as a result of the crisis of over-production □ In 1933 - industrial production fell to 1/3 its pre-Depression levels □ 25% of population jobless □ Coincided with drought Lectures Page 1 □ Coincided with drought □ Crisis: inability to establish social relations suitable to new organization of production - Solution owes much to Henry Ford and to new forms of state involvement - Ford: implemented Taylorism /scientific management - Standardized product design - Model T - Standardized parts - Single purpose machine tools - Hand-eye coordination, skilled - Moving assembly line - $5 /8 hour day - Idea of paying higher wages to workers - Unionization - came to the automobile industry - Henry Ford and the changing geography of automobile production □ Early dominance partly due to geographic strategy □ Geography was important to his operations □ Highland Park: Birthplace of the moving assembly □ River Rouge factory: parts and components □ Idea: branch assembly plant idea □ Components: S.E. Michigan □ Assembly plants: near the market, N.E., S and W coast - James Couzens the architect of this scheme - Similarity to the principles of industrial location developed by Alfred Weber in 1909 - (Alfred is brother of Max Weber) - Raw Material - - > Plant - - > Market □ Depending on the raw materials needed for the product, it would be reasonable to situate the plant to the market or the raw materials a) Bulky product b) Minimum weight charge (for freight container) - the Model T was really light c) High rates for cars - Advantages assembly plants: (close to market) □ Minimum wasted space □ Lower rates for parts □ Favorable local publicity - Ford influenced the geography of North American automobile manufacture - New spatial division of labor - Locational strategy went hand-in-hand with development of new production process and detailed division of labor - Linked mass production with mass consumption b) Mass Consumption - Associated with rising wages - National standardized markets - Low prices for consumer goods - Homogenization (people wanted to same goods as their neighbors) - The Fordist mode of regulation ○ Emphasis in literature on the role of the nation state as key institution, and in particular, the Keynesian Welfare State (KWS) - or Fordist state ○ Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal - (see handout) 1) First New Deal 1933-35 2) Second New Deal 1935 -39 ○ Central to Fordist mode of regulation is
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