René Girard = New Economic Thinking

From the Institute for New Economic Thinking (INET) comes this lecture on René Girard’s mimetic theory in relation to economics and ecology. Excellent panelists include Edward Fullbrook, Jean-Pierre Dupuy, Mark Anspach, Paul Dumouchel, and André Orléan (click the names of these people for more information on their work).

Be inspired!



  1. skylar · May 18, 2013

    thanks for linking to this great lecture. I wouldn’t have found it otherwise.
    It was much too long to watch, so I listened to it on my Ipod while driving.

    There were so many great concepts addressed that I ended up listening to it 4 times just to try to wrap my brain around some of them.

    One analogy that I particularly liked was the comparison of the greyhound dogs “cooperating” to catch a fox being compared to an economic transaction. We usually consider human beings as the only ones to be able to come to an agreement or to form a pact among animals but that’s because we don’t realize all the unconscious aspects of our behavior.

    I can’t even remember which speaker was the one who made the analogy because I wasn’t watching the video, but this was certainly a new perspective on the violence of economic transactions, for me.

    I wish there was a transcript of the lecture, it would be nice to be able to quickly review some bullet points.


    • erik buys · May 19, 2013


      I had a similar experience. I’ll try to connect some of these thoughts with the lecture of Timothy Snyder on the holocaust, but, indeed, it takes time to come to terms with this type of information :).


  2. Christian ecologist · December 9, 2016

    Thank you for posting this. I found the lecture on the web in 2013 when googling ‘mimetic desire,’ for a column on our cultural money-worship, and was blown away by these thinkers and their keen perception that Money (or “The Economy”) had become our new global deity, for which all other creatures, values, etc must be sacrificed.

    Few people (leaders not least) dare come out and say this. Yet it is so obvious. This sacrificial cult (as Girard would call it) is intoxicating, entrenched, so part of our thinking we cannot see it. And so to us, in our trance, it seems totally normal to burn up the planet and wipe out the other species for the sake of this false ‘Prosperity’ god. People like Ralph Reed and his Koch-funded octopus of religious orgs and politicos have propelled this as “Christian values,” while pocketing the millions they make from their Big Oil/ Timber/ Telecom/ campaign clients. That’s how Trump got elected, via his consultant Reed’s influence over “values voters,” and this false god of mammon and power being presented as “Jesus.” Total hogwash–yet this economic cult hypnotizes people, both religious and non, and punishes anyone (environmentalists, etc) not worshiping at the altar.

    Thank you for helping get this no-brainer-obvious (but rarely discussed) truth out there and helping humans to break out of this creepy endless trance.


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