Andreas Wecker/Flickr

بيكيتي وروح العصر

برينستون ــ في أيامنا هذه، يُلِح عليّ نفس السؤال أينما ذهبت وأياً كان الشخص الذي ألتقي به: ما رأيك في توماس بيكيتي؟ وهو سؤال ذو شقين في واقع الأمر: ما رأيك في كتاب بيكيتي، وما رأيك في بيكيتي كظاهرة؟

الإجابة على السؤال الأول أسهل كثيرا. فبالمصادفة البحتة، كنت من أوائل قراء النسخة الصادرة باللغة الإنجليزية من كتاب "رأس المال في القرن الحادي والعشرين". فقد أرسل لي ناشر بيكيتي، مطبعة جامعة هارفارد، تجارب ما قبل الطباعة، على أمل أن أساهم بتعريف الكتاب على الغلاف الخلفي. وفعلت ذلك عن طيب خاطر بعد أن أبهرني نطاق الكتاب وعمقه وطموحه.

بطبيعة الحال، كنت على دراية بأعمال بيكيتي التجريبية حول توزيع الدخل، والتي نفذها بالاشتراك مع إيمانويل سايز، وأنتوني أتكنسون، وآخرين. وقد أسفر هذا البحث بالفعل عن نتائج جديدة مذهلة حول ارتفاع دخول ذوي الثراء الفاحش. كما أظهر أن التفاوت بين الناس في العديد من الاقتصادات المتقدمة بلغ مستويات غير مشهودة منذ أوائل القرن العشرين. وهو عمل بارع في حد ذاته.

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