“Capitalism and Ideology”, by Thomas Piketty, confronted with censorship

French economist Thomas Piketty announced on Monday that his latest book “Capitalism and Ideology” “probably” will not be released in China, his Chinese publishers are demanding some cuts that the author refuses.

“Capitalism and Ideology”, the latest book by French economist Thomas Piketty dedicated to the meteoric rise of inequality in the world, will “probably” not be released in China, the author refuses the cuts required by Citic Press, his Chinese publisher announced he AFP on Monday, August 31st.

“In conclusion, they want to remove all references to modern China, and in particular to inequality and opacity in China. I have refused these terms and indicated that I only accept a complete translation without cuts.” Any kind, “said Thomas Piketty.

Considered a “rock star” in economics, the professor at the Paris School of Economics published this new sum with Editions du Seuil in September 2019, six years after the global success of his book “Le Capital au XXIe century” (more than 2.5 million sold copy).

“Other Chinese publishers in contact with my French publisher have indicated that they will also require cuts, so at this time it is likely that this book will not be published in China,” he added. , confirms information from the South China Morning Post.

A first opus praised by President Xi Jinping

Citic Press has had the honor of collaborating with ThomasPiketty to publish the Chinese version of “Capital in the 21st Century”. Both sides were happy to work together. The copyright to ThomasPiketty’s new book is still under negotiation. “, a spokesman for the publisher told AFP.

This first opus had sold hundreds of thousands of copies in China and had even been praised by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who had used the results of his research on the sharp rise in inequality in the United States and Europe as proof of the superiority of the Chinese communist model.

But in Chapter 12 of “Capitalism and Ideology,” devoted to “communist and post-communist societies,” the French economist attacks, after attaching Russia’s “oligarchic and kleptocratic drive,” the “plutocracy” of a Chinese regime that, in terms of income disparities, , has entered or even passed western countries.

“At the end of the 2010s (…) China is hardly less inequal than the United States, and it is clearly more than Europe, when it was the most equal of the three regions- continents in the early 80s”: this meaning occurs except among the 24 episodes that Citic Press demanded removal, first in early June in the French edition, then in early August in the English edition.

We find it here: “after a long time in the country for the abolition of private property, it [la Chine] has become a world leader for the new oligarchs and offshore wealth, that is, hidden in opaque structures within tax havens. More generally, post-communism, in its Russian, Chinese and Eastern European variants, in the early 2000s has become the best ally of hyper-capitalism “.

Censorship that “illustrates the growing nervousness of the Chinese regime”

If a Russian edition is not planned, China is the only country that has formulated such demands, Thomas Piketty continued, for whom this “censorship illustrates the growing nervousness of the Chinese regime and its refusal to open debate on the various economic and political systems.”

“It is sad that Xi Jinping’s ‘Chinese-colored socialism’ spoils dialogue and criticism”, despite the “critical but constructive perspective on the various unequal regimes on the planet and their hypocrisy” which the economist claims to have adopted in his book and which does not save The United States more than Europe, Brazil, India or the Middle East.

With AFP