Veröffentlicht in: Journal of Economic Issues, Januar 2019, 53(1), S. 57-80 ·

Autor: Ferdinand Wenzlaff


The explanation of economization and marketization processes is typically approached in the mindset of structural superiority, primacy or hegemony of the economic subsystem over non-economic spheres of social life. However, economic primacy is an underexplored puzzle for social theory from the perspective of functional differentiation theory, which emphasizes equal autonomy of social subsystems. Schimank has paved the way for theorizing economic primacy and economization pressures coherent with functional differentiation. Economization in his theoretical solution is connected to the economy’s governance mechanism—the market which is seen as having a weak order-building capacity. The contribution of this article lies in suggesting an alternative conceptualization of the internal dynamics of the economy—the stagnation tendency for explaining economization pressures as a systematic outcome.