100 books like Spirituality, Corporate Culture, and American Business

By James Dennis Lorusso,

Here are 100 books that Spirituality, Corporate Culture, and American Business fans have personally recommended if you like Spirituality, Corporate Culture, and American Business. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise

Chad E. Seales Author Of Religion Around Bono: Evangelical Enchantment and Neoliberal Capitalism

From my list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've always been fascinated by the ways religion reconciles contradiction. Both of my parents were public school teachers in the panhandle of Florida, and I now work at a public university in Texas, yet the culture in which I was raised, of white evangelicalism, supported economic policies of neoliberalism that defunded public life. My interest in American religion is motivated by the question of why we participate in systems that harm us. This is an economic question, but sufficient answers must address the power of religion to shape what we see as morally good and bad. These books all do that.

Chad's book list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion

Chad E. Seales Why did Chad love this book?

Having grown up in a southern evangelical family in the 1980s and ‘90s, I never understood why my parents, like other southerners, were such staunch supporters of Sam Walton and Wal-Mart, when the chain store's economic approach of buy low, sell low, eroded small-town life. Then I read Moreton's book and it all made sense.

By Bethany Moreton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked To Serve God and Wal-Mart as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the decades after World War II, evangelical Christianity nourished America's devotion to free markets, free trade, and free enterprise. The history of Wal-Mart uncovers a complex network that united Sun Belt entrepreneurs, evangelical employees, Christian business students, overseas missionaries, and free-market activists. Through the stories of people linked by the world's largest corporation, Bethany Moreton shows how a Christian service ethos powered capitalism at home and abroad.

While industrial America was built by and for the urban North, rural Southerners comprised much of the labor, management, and consumers in the postwar service sector that raised the Sun Belt to…


Book cover of Secure the Soul: Christian Piety and Gang Prevention in Guatemala

Chad E. Seales Author Of Religion Around Bono: Evangelical Enchantment and Neoliberal Capitalism

From my list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've always been fascinated by the ways religion reconciles contradiction. Both of my parents were public school teachers in the panhandle of Florida, and I now work at a public university in Texas, yet the culture in which I was raised, of white evangelicalism, supported economic policies of neoliberalism that defunded public life. My interest in American religion is motivated by the question of why we participate in systems that harm us. This is an economic question, but sufficient answers must address the power of religion to shape what we see as morally good and bad. These books all do that.

Chad's book list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion

Chad E. Seales Why did Chad love this book?

No other book better encapsulates the evangelical spirit of neoliberal policies in the details of everyday life, including what it feels like to be arrested in the United States for being part of a gang, and ending up in a call center in Central America, only to be morally shamed for not working hard enough, as your corporate employer leverages the power of religion, and the threat of danger, to keep you trapped there. 

By Kevin Lewis O'Neill,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Secure the Soul as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"I'm not perfect," Mateo confessed, "Nobody is. But I try." Secure the Soul shuttles between the life of Mateo, a born-again, ex-gang member in Guatemala and the gang prevention programs that work so hard to keep him alive. Along the way, this poignantly written ethnography uncovers the Christian underpinnings of Central American security. In the streets of Guatemala City - amid angry lynch mobs, overcrowded prisons, and paramilitary death squads - millions of dollars empower church missions, faith-based programs, and seemingly secular security projects to prevent gang violence through the practice of Christian piety. With Guatemala increasingly defined by both…


Book cover of One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America

Andrew L. Whitehead Author Of American Idolatry: How Christian Nationalism Betrays the Gospel and Threatens the Church

From my list on Christian Nationalism in the United States.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been fascinated by the relationship between Christianity and the United States for decades. Much of my work in the area of Christian nationalism is the result of my personal religious history and experiences, as well as my work as a social scientist. I’ve always been fascinated by how religion influences and is influenced by its social context. Christian nationalism in the US is a clear example of how influential religious ideologies can be in our social world.

Andrew's book list on Christian Nationalism in the United States

Andrew L. Whitehead Why did Andrew love this book?

Knowing our history is so important, and this is one of the best books on the history of Christian nationalism in the United States during the 20th century.

What becomes so clear is the cultural influences on American Christianity including which voices are lifted up, and which ones are ignored or silenced. Let’s just say you won’t ever look at Billy Graham and his work the same way again.

By Kevin M. Kruse,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked One Nation Under God as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

We're often told that the United States is, was, and always has been a Christian nation. But in One Nation Under God , historian Kevin M. Kruse reveals that the belief that America is fundamentally and formally Christian originated in the 1930s.To fight the slavery" of FDR's New Deal, businessmen enlisted religious activists in a campaign for freedom under God" that culminated in the election of their ally Dwight Eisenhower in 1952. The new president revolutionized the role of religion in American politics. He inaugurated new traditions like the National Prayer Breakfast, as Congress added the phrase under God" to…


Book cover of Consuming Religion

Chad E. Seales Author Of Religion Around Bono: Evangelical Enchantment and Neoliberal Capitalism

From my list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've always been fascinated by the ways religion reconciles contradiction. Both of my parents were public school teachers in the panhandle of Florida, and I now work at a public university in Texas, yet the culture in which I was raised, of white evangelicalism, supported economic policies of neoliberalism that defunded public life. My interest in American religion is motivated by the question of why we participate in systems that harm us. This is an economic question, but sufficient answers must address the power of religion to shape what we see as morally good and bad. These books all do that.

Chad's book list on American evangelicalism and neoliberal religion

Chad E. Seales Why did Chad love this book?

If you want to understand how corporations and not churches became the most powerful institutions of moral influence in America, capable of taking away an employee's personal choice outside the workplace and denying their access to healthcare based on the owners’ biblical beliefs, legally protected by the U.S. government as a religious freedom, then you need to read this book.

By Kathryn Lofton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Consuming Religion as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What are you drawn to like, to watch, or even to binge? What are you free to consume, and what do you become through consumption? These questions of desire and value, Kathryn Lofton argues, are at bottom religious questions. Whether or not you have been inside of a cathedral, a temple, or a seminary, you live in the frame of religion. In eleven essays exploring soap and office cubicles, Britney Spears and the Kardashians, corporate culture and Goldman Sachs, Lofton shows the conceptual levers of religion in thinking about social modes of encounter, use, and longing. Wherever we see people…


Book cover of The Old Is Dying and the New Cannot Be Born: From Progressive Neoliberalism to Trump and Beyond

Leah Modigliani Author Of Counter Revanchist Art in the Global City: Walls, Blockades, and Barricades as Repertoires of Creative Action

From my list on moving through the city with newly critical eyes.

Why am I passionate about this?

Since the age of seven, I've been conscious of the need to bypass how one is supposed to do things. I realized then that my grandmother could not pursue a writing career because she was also a woman and a wife; a cautionary tale I took to heart since I was already beginning to identify as an artist. I'm driven to uncover how we recognize what we see, and how forces beyond our control engender or foreclose upon new ways of being in the world. A professional life lived in the arts has allowed the fullest flexibility for exploring these ideas as one is generally encouraged to think differently.

Leah's book list on moving through the city with newly critical eyes

Leah Modigliani Why did Leah love this book?

This pocket-sized book of a mere 63 pages can be read in a couple of hours and has a lasting impact.

Fraser, a feminist philosopher I was lucky to take a class with once in graduate school, explains the political and economic conditions that frame the near-constant anxiety one feels daily as witnesses to near-constant national and global crises.

We are all living through a “hegemonic gap;” that is, a profoundly unsettling transformation between the failure of agreed upon political authorities (she labels this progressive neoliberalism) and the lack of any clear future direction. In the mix is the global rise of proto-fascist populism, environmental disaster, increasing wealth gaps, and violence and war.

What can guide us out of this mess? That is the subject of the last few pages… 

By Nancy Fraser,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Old Is Dying and the New Cannot Be Born as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Across the globe politics as usual are being rejected and faith in neoliberalism is fracturing beyond repair. Leading political theorist Nancy Fraser, in conversation with Jacobin publisher Bhaskar Sunkara, dissects neoliberalism's current crisis and argues that we might wrest new futures from its ruins.

The global political, ecological, economic, and social breakdown-symbolized, but not caused, by Trump's election-has destroyed faith that neoliberal capitalism is beneficial to the majority. Fraser explores how this faith was built through the late twentieth century by balancing two central tenets: recognition (who deserves rights) and distribution (who deserves income). When these began to fray, new…


Book cover of The Rise and Fall of the Neoliberal Order: America and the World in the Free Market Era

Vinícius Guilherme Rodrigues Vieira Author Of Shaping Nations and Markets: Identity Capital, Trade, and the Populist Rage

From my list on understanding the transformation of capitalism and globalisation.

Why am I passionate about this?

Since 2008, I have conducted research on themes related to International Political Economy. I am currently the co-chair of the research committee on this topic at the International Political Science Association (IPSA) and am passionate about making sense of the interplay between material and symbolic factors that shape capitalism and globalisation. Being based in Brazil, I was stuck when the country—which did not have salient identity cleavages in politics—came to be, after 2008, a hotspot of religious-based right-wing populism associated with the defence of trade liberalisation as globalisation started to face meaningful backlash from White-majority constituencies who are relatively losers of the post-Cold War order in the advanced industrialised democracies.

Vinícius' book list on understanding the transformation of capitalism and globalisation

Vinícius Guilherme Rodrigues Vieira Why did Vinícius love this book?

I love the way he explores the interplay between economic ideas and political institutions that culminated in the triumph of market forces in the aftermath of the Cold War. Yet, Gerstle’s most interesting insights lie at the end of the book as he classifies Trump and Modi as ethnonationalist leaders of the same feather as China’s Xi Jinping and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

Globalisation, however, has not necessarily reached its end, as it may simply be reframed to fit a world whose shape has yet to be defined.

By Gary Gerstle,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Rise and Fall of the Neoliberal Order as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Best Books of 2022: Financial Times Best Non-Fiction Books of 2022: De Tijd Shortlisted for Financial Times Best Business Book of the Year

The most sweeping account of how neoliberalism came to dominate American politics for nearly a half century before crashing against the forces of Trumpism on the right and a new progressivism on the left.

The epochal shift toward neoliberalism-a web of related policies that, broadly speaking, reduced the footprint of government in society and reassigned economic power to private market forces-that began in the United States and Great Britain in the late 1970s fundamentally changed the world.…


Book cover of Thiefing a Chance: Factory Work, Illicit Labor, and Neoliberal Subjectivities in Trinidad

Alanna Cant Author Of The Value of Aesthetics: Oaxacan Woodcarvers in Global Economies of Culture

From my list on people who make things for a living.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Canadian social anthropologist living in England, and my research is about material culture and heritage in Mexico. I have always been fascinated by the ways that people make their cultures through objects, food, and space; this almost certainly started with my mum who is always making something stitched, knitted, savoury, or sweet, often all at the same time. I hope that you enjoy the books on my list – I chose them as they each have something important to teach us about how our consumption of things affects those who make them, often in profound ways.

Alanna's book list on people who make things for a living

Alanna Cant Why did Alanna love this book?

In Thiefing a Chance, Rebecca Prentice shows us what life is like for women who make clothing in a factory in Trinidad – a livelihood shared by more than 75 million people worldwide, most of them in the Global South. I recommend this book because although Prentice discusses the ways that late-capitalism and neoliberal structural reforms have produced the difficult economic and working conditions that her research participants must cope with, she also shows how the women are not passive subjects in these processes. She documents how they take every opportunity on the factory floor to informally gain skills and to make ‘illicit’ garments out of spare materials, which they can sell outside of work.

However, Prentice resists the temptation to analyze these practices as ‘social resistance,’ and instead shows how such informal practices actually encourage these women to embrace neoliberal identities of competitive, enterprising individuals.

By Rebecca Prentice,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Thiefing a Chance as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When an IMF-backed program of liberalization opened Trinidad’s borders to foreign ready-made apparel, global competition damaged the local industry and unraveled worker entitlements and expectations but also presented new economic opportunities for engaging the “global” market. This fascinating ethnography explores contemporary life in the Signature Fashions garment factory, where the workers attempt to exploit gaps in these new labor configurations through illicit and informal uses of the factory, a practice they colloquially refer to as “thiefing a chance.”

Drawing on fifteen months of fieldwork, author Rebecca Prentice combines a vivid picture of factory life, first-person accounts, and anthropological analysis to…


Book cover of The Morals of the Market: Human Rights and the Rise of Neoliberalism

Xenia A. Cherkaev Author Of Gleaning for Communism: The Soviet Socialist Household in Theory and Practice

From my list on the possibility of collectivist modern life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am interested in how regimes of ethics and property interrelate, and how this interrelation informs political thought: in questions of cooperatives and collectives, customary use-rights, and household economies. I'm an anthropologist by training and geographically I work in Russia. I've written about socialist property law and stolen late-Soviet penguins, Stalin-era mine-detection dogs and perestroika-era saints, möbius bands, 19th-century Russian cheese-making co-operatives, New World Order theories of “The Golden Billion” and other important matters.

Xenia's book list on the possibility of collectivist modern life

Xenia A. Cherkaev Why did Xenia love this book?

72 people died when the Grenfell Tower burned in 2017, hundreds more lost their homes.

As survivors slept out in London's mosques and churches, one politician suggested requisitioning empty investment properties to house them. But the idea was shot down as a violation of human rights: those of the property owners. Whyte's Morals of the Market opens with this historical anecdote to ask how neoliberalism and human rights discourses evolved together.

Working through published and archival sources, the book shows that neoliberal thinkers “developed their own account of human rights as protections for the market order.” To their authors, such claims were not cynical. They were moral: grounded in a political morality that equated social progress with commercial relations, collectivism with moral failure, socialism with civilizational regression.

As people whose social worlds have been shattered by neoliberal policies increasingly turn to right-wing populism for a new kind of collectivist future,…

By Jessica Whyte,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Morals of the Market as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Drawing on detailed archival research on the parallel histories of human rights and neoliberalism, Jessica Whyte uncovers the place of human rights in neoliberal attempts to develop a moral framework for a market society. In the wake of the Second World War, neoliberals saw demands for new rights to social welfare and self-determination as threats to "civilisation". Yet, rather than rejecting rights, they developed a distinctive account of human rights as tools to depoliticise civil society, protect private investments and shape liberal subjects.


Book cover of Undoing the Demos: Neoliberalism's Stealth Revolution

Adam Kotsko Author Of Neoliberalism's Demons: On the Political Theology of Late Capital

From my list on understanding neoliberalism.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up outside of Flint, Michigan, which during my lifetime went from being a pretty nice place to live to being a perpetual basket case that still doesn’t have clean water. I’ve always been very concerned with the question of what went wrong, and very early in my graduate education, it became clear to me that the neoliberal agenda that started under Reagan has been at the root of the economic rot and destruction that has afflicted Flint and so many other places. That personal connection, combined with my background in theology, makes me well-suited to talk about how political belief systems “hook” us, even when they hurt us.

Adam's book list on understanding neoliberalism

Adam Kotsko Why did Adam love this book?

More than most authors on neoliberalism, Brown takes it seriously as a philosophy and worldview that aims to reshape human society and our individual sense of self. Drawing on classic philosophers like Aristotle, Marx, and Arendt, she argues that neoliberalism is hollowing our sense of what it means to be human by turning us all into hyper-competitive, self-marketing, self-branding drones. I wind up arguing with her a lot in my book, but whether you wind up agreeing or disagreeing with her, she’s an essential point of reference.

By Wendy Brown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Undoing the Demos as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Neoliberal rationality ― ubiquitous today in statecraft and the workplace, in jurisprudence, education, and culture ― remakes everything and everyone in the image of homo oeconomicus. What happens when this rationality transposes the constituent elements of democracy into an economic register? In vivid detail, Wendy Brown explains how democracy itself is imperiled.

The demos disintegrates into bits of human capital; concerns with justice cede to the mandates of growth rates, credit ratings, and investment climates; liberty submits to the imperative of human capital appreciation; equality dissolves into market competition; and popular sovereignty grows incoherent. Liberal democratic practices may not survive…


Book cover of The Rise and Fall of Neoliberal Capitalism

Robert Chernomas Author Of Neoliberal Lives: Work, Politics, Nature, and Health in the Contemporary United States

From my list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning.

Why am I passionate about this?

Neoliberalism and I have grown up in opposition to one another over the past four decades. As a professor of economics, union, and political activist I have observed, wrote about, and resisted its effects on the life chances of the great majority of its citizens with particular focus on the United States as its primary protagonist and gatekeeper. The opposition to this transformative epoch included writing about the significant contributions of my profession to Neoliberal economics in two previous books; The Profit Doctrine: The Economists of the Neoliberal Era and Economics in the 21st Century: A Critical Perspective.

Robert's book list on class warfare and that the wrong class is winning

Robert Chernomas Why did Robert love this book?

In addition to its excellent coverage of the economics of this transformation, its historical account of the shift in class partnerships makes a unique contribution to our understanding of the period. In the Golden Age of the previous period Big Business maintained a fraught alliance with its unions willing to pay growing wages closely aligned with labor productivity growth with the grudging acceptance of higher taxes and regulations of the Keynesian era leaving small business to fend for itself. Once Japan and Germany reindustrialized creating a more competitive economic landscape Kotz describes the full-blown class warfare identified by Buffet as Big Business realigned with small business to fight for cuts to its wages, taxes, regulatory costs and unions, and progressive politics.

By David M. Kotz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Rise and Fall of Neoliberal Capitalism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The financial and economic collapse that began in the United States in 2008 and spread to the rest of the world continues to burden the global economy. David Kotz, who was one of the few academic economists to predict it, argues that the ongoing economic crisis is not simply the aftermath of financial panic and an unusually severe recession but instead is a structural crisis of neoliberal, or free-market, capitalism. Consequently, continuing stagnation cannot be resolved by policy measures alone. It requires major institutional restructuring.

"Kotz's book will reward careful study by everyone interested in the question of
stages in…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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