In this timely study of the different approaches of America and Europe to the problems of domestic inequality and poverty, the authors describe just how different the two continents are in the level of State engagement in the redistribution of income. They discuss various possible economic explanations for the difference, including different levels of pre-tax income, openness, and social mobility; they survey politico-historical differences such as the varying physical size of nations, their electoral and legal systems, and the character of their political parties, as well as their experiences of war; and they examine sociological explanations which include different attitudes to the poor and notions of social responsibility, as well as, most importantly, attitudes to race.
Table of Contents
2. Redistribution in the United Sates and Europe: the data
3. Economic explanations
4. Political institutions and redistribution
5. The origin of political institutions
6. Race and redistribution
7. The Ideology of Redistribution