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Aquinas and the Market
Toward a Humane Economy
Mary L. Hirschfeld
Harvard University Press, 2018

Economists and theologians usually inhabit different intellectual worlds. Economists investigate the workings of markets and tend to set ethical questions aside. Theologians, anxious to take up concerns raised by market outcomes, often dismiss economics and lose insights into the influence of market incentives on individual behavior. Mary L. Hirschfeld, who was a professor of economics for fifteen years before training as a theologian, seeks to bridge these two fields in this innovative work about economics and the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas.

According to Hirschfeld, an economics rooted in Thomistic thought integrates many of the insights of economists with a larger view of the good life, and gives us critical purchase on the ethical shortcomings of modern capitalism. In a Thomistic approach, she writes, ethics and economics cannot be reconciled if we begin with narrow questions about fair wages or the acceptability of usury. Rather, we must begin with an understanding of how economic life serves human happiness. The key point is that material wealth is an instrumental good, valuable only to the extent that it allows people to flourish. Hirschfeld uses that insight to develop an account of a genuinely humane economy in which pragmatic and material concerns matter but the pursuit of wealth for its own sake is not the ultimate goal.

The Thomistic economics that Hirschfeld outlines is thus capable of dealing with our culture as it is, while still offering direction about how we might make the economy better serve the human good.

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Art and the Market
Roger Fry on Commerce in Art, Selected Writings, Edited with an Interpretation
Craufurd D. Goodwin
University of Michigan Press, 1998
Roger Fry, a core member of the Bloomsbury Group, was involved with all aspects of the art market as artist, critic, curator, historian, journalist, advisor to collectors, and gallery operator. He is especially remembered as the person who introduced postimpressionist art to Britain.
Reprinted in this volume are seventeen of Fry's works on commerce in art. Although he had no formal training in economics, Fry addressed the art market as a modern economist might do. It is therefore fitting that his writings receive here an original interpretation from the perspective of a modern economist, Craufurd D. Goodwin. Goodwin explores why Fry's work is both a landmark in the history of cross-disciplinary thought and a source of fresh insights into a wide range of current policy questions.
The new writings included contain Fry's most important contributions to theory, history, and debates over policy as he explored the determinants of the supply of art, the demand for art, and the art market institutions that facilitate exchange. His ideas and speculations are as stimulating and provocative today as when they were written.
"A fascinating selection of essays by one of the twentieth century's most thoughtful and stimulating critics. Goodwin's introduction sets the stage beautifully, providing useful links to Veblen and Keynes." --D. E. Moggridge, University of Toronto
"Art and the Market uncovers new connections between aesthetics and art in the Bloomsbury Group. . . . Goodwin adds significantly to the understanding of cultural economics in the work of Fry himself as well as J. M. Keynes and even Leonard and Virginia Woolf." --S. P. Rosenbaum, University of Toronto
"All those interested in the arts and economics, and their connections, will be delighted by this collection, as will be students of Bloomsbury." --Peter Stansky, Stanford University
Craufurd D. Goodwin is James B. Duke Professor of Economics, Duke University.
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Banking on the Body
The Market in Blood, Milk, and Sperm in Modern America
Kara W. Swanson
Harvard University Press, 2014

Scientific advances and economic forces have converged to create something unthinkable for much of human history: a robust market in human body products. Every year, countless Americans supply blood, sperm, and breast milk to “banks” that store these products for later use by strangers in routine medical procedures. These exchanges entail complicated questions. Which body products are donated and which sold? Who gives and who receives? And, in the end, who profits? In this eye-opening study, Kara Swanson traces the history of body banks from the nineteenth-century experiments that discovered therapeutic uses for body products to twenty-first-century websites that facilitate a thriving global exchange.

More than a metaphor, the “bank” has shaped ongoing controversies over body products as either marketable commodities or gifts donated to help others. A physician, Dr. Bernard Fantus, proposed a “bank” in 1937 to make blood available to all patients. Yet the bank metaphor labeled blood as something to be commercially bought and sold, not communally shared. As blood banks became a fixture of medicine after World War II, American doctors made them a front line in their war against socialized medicine. The profit-making connotations of the “bank” reinforced a market-based understanding of supply and distribution, with unexpected consequences for all body products, from human eggs to kidneys.

Ultimately, the bank metaphor straitjacketed legal codes and reinforced inequalities in medical care. By exploring its past, Banking on the Body charts the path to a more efficient and less exploitative distribution of the human body’s life-giving potential.

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Between Jesus and the Market
The Emotions that Matter in Right-Wing America
Linda Kintz
Duke University Press, 1997
Between Jesus and the Market looks at the appeal of the Christian right-wing movement in contemporary American politics and culture. In her discussions of books and videotapes that are widely distributed by the Christian right but little known by mainstream Americans, Linda Kintz makes explicit the crucial need to understand the psychological makeup of born-again Christians as well as the sociopolitical dynamics involved in their cause. She focuses on the role of religious women in right-wing Christianity and asks, for example, why so many women are attracted to what is often seen as an antiwoman philosophy. The result, a telling analysis of the complexity and appeal of the "emotions that matter" to many Americans, highlights how these emotions now determine public policy in ways that are increasingly dangerous for those outside familiarity’s circle.
With texts from such organizations as the Christian Coalition, the Heritage Foundation, and Concerned Women for America, and writings by Elizabeth Dole, Newt Gingrich, Pat Robertson, and Rush Limbaugh, Kintz traces the usefulness of this activism for the secular claim that conservative political economy is, in fact, simply an expression of the deepest and most admirable elements of human nature itself. The discussion of Limbaugh shows how he draws on the skepticism of contemporary culture to create a sense of absolute truth within his own media performance—its truth guaranteed by the market. Kintz also describes how conservative interpretations of the Holy Scriptures, the U.S. Constitution, and the Declaration of Independence have been used to challenge causes such as feminism, women’s reproductive rights, and gay and lesbian rights. In addition to critiquing the intellectual and political left for underestimating the power of right-wing grassroots organizing, corporate interests, and postmodern media sophistication, Between Jesus and the Market discusses the proliferation of militia groups, Christian entrepreneurship, and the explosive growth and "selling" of the Promise Keepers.
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Building a Market
The Rise of the Home Improvement Industry, 1914-1960
Richard Harris
University of Chicago Press, 2012
Each year, North Americans spend as much money fixing up their homes as they do buying new ones. This obsession with improving our dwellings has given rise to a multibillion-dollar industry that includes countless books, consumer magazines, a cable television network, and thousands of home improvement stores.
Building a Market charts the rise of the home improvement industry in the United States and Canada from the end of World War I into the late 1950s. Drawing on the insights of business, social, and urban historians, and making use of a wide range of documentary sources, Richard Harris shows how the middle-class preference for home ownership first emerged in the 1920s—and how manufacturers, retailers, and the federal government combined to establish the massive home improvement market and a pervasive culture of Do-It-Yourself. 
Deeply insightful, Building a Market is the carefully crafted history of the emergence and evolution of a home improvement revolution that changed not just American culture but the American landscape as well.
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China during the Great Depression
Market, State, and the World Economy, 1929–1937
Tomoko Shiroyama
Harvard University Press, 2008

The Great Depression was a global phenomenon: every economy linked to international financial and commodity markets suffered. The aim of this book is not merely to show that China could not escape the consequences of drastic declines in financial flows and trade but also to offer a new perspective for understanding modern Chinese history. The Great Depression was a watershed in modern China. China was the only country on the silver standard in an international monetary system dominated by the gold standard.

Fluctuations in international silver prices undermined China’s monetary system and destabilized its economy. In response to severe deflation, the state shifted its position toward the market from laissez faire to committed intervention. Establishing a new monetary system, with a different foreign-exchange standard, required deliberate government management; ultimately the process of economic recovery and monetary change politicized the entire Chinese economy. By analyzing the impact of the slump and the process of recovery, this book examines the transformation of state-market relations in light of the linkages between the Chinese and the world economy.

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Concept and Controversy
Sixty Years of Taking Ideas to Market
By W. W. Rostow
University of Texas Press, 2003

A trusted advisor to Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Johnson and one of America's leading professors of economic history, W. W. Rostow has helped shape the intellectual debate and governmental policies on major economic, political, and military issues since World War II. In this thought-provoking memoir, he takes a retrospective look at eleven key policy problems with which he has been involved to show how ideas flow into concrete action and how actions taken or not taken in the short term actually determine the long run that we call "the future."

The issues that Rostow discusses are these:

  • The use of air power in Europe in the 1940s
  • Working toward a united Europe during the Cold War
  • The death of Joseph Stalin and early attempts to end the Cold War
  • Eisenhower's Open Skies policy
  • The debate over foreign aid in the 1950s
  • The economic revival of Korea
  • Efforts to control inflation in the 1960s
  • Waiting for democracy in China
  • The Vietnam War and Southeast Asian policy
  • U.S. urban problems in disadvantaged neighborhoods
  • The challenges posed by declining population in the twenty-first century

In discussing how he and others have worked to meet these challenges, Rostow builds a compelling case for including long-term forces in the making of current policy. He concludes his memoir with provocative reflections on the twentieth and twenty-first centuries and on how individual actors shape history.

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Faith in the Market
Religion and the Rise of Urban Commercial Culture
Edited by John M. Giggie and Diane Winston
Rutgers University Press, 2002
Scholars have long assumed that industrialization and the growth of modern cities signaled a decline of religious practice among urban dwellers - that urban commercial culture weakened traditional religious ties by luring the faithful away from their devotional practice. Spanning many disciplines, the essays in this volume challenge this notion of the "secular city" and examine how members of metropolitan houses of worship invented fresh expressions of religiosity by incorporating consumer goods, popular entertainment, advertising techniques, and marketing into their spiritual lives. Faith in the Market explores phenomena from Salvation Army "slum angels" to the "race movies" of the mid-twentieth century, from Catholic teens' modest dress crusades to Black Muslim artists. The contributors-integrating gender, performance, and material culture studies into their analyses-reveal the many ways in which religious groups actually embraced commercial culture to establish an urban presence. Although the city streets may have proved inhospitable to some forms of religion, many others, including evangelicalism, Catholicism, and Judaism, assumed rich and complex forms as they developed in vital urban centers.
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The Firm, the Market, and the Law
R. H. Coase
University of Chicago Press, 1987
Few other economists have been read and cited as often as R.H. Coase has been, even though, as he admits, "most economists have a different way of looking at economic problems and do not share my conception of the nature of our subject." Coase's particular interest has been that part of economic theory that deals with firms, industries, and markets—what is known as price theory or microeconomics. He has always urged his fellow economists to examine the foundations on which their theory exists, and this volume collects some of his classic articles probing those very foundations. "The Nature of the Firm" (1937) introduced the then-revolutionary concept of transaction costs into economic theory. "The Problem of Social Cost" (1960) further developed this concept, emphasizing the effect of the law on the working of the economic system. The remaining papers and new introductory essay clarify and extend Coarse's arguments and address his critics.

"These essays bear rereading. Coase's careful attention to actual institutions not only offers deep insight into economics but also provides the best argument for Coase's methodological position. The clarity of the exposition and the elegance of the style also make them a pleasure to read and a model worthy of emulation."—Lewis A. Kornhauser, Journal of Economic Literature

Ronald H. Coase was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economic Science in 1991.
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The Gospel of Sustainability
Media, Market and LOHAS
Monica M. Emerich
University of Illinois Press, 2014
From organic produce and clothing to socially conscious investing and eco-tourism, the lifestyles of health and sustainability, or LOHAS, movement encompasses diverse products and practices intended to contribute to a more sustainable lifestyle for people and the planet. In The Gospel of Sustainability, Monica M. Emerich explores the contemporary spiritual expression of this green cultural shift at the confluence of the media and the market.
 
This is the first book to qualitatively study the LOHAS marketplace and the development of a discourse of sustainability of the self and the social and natural worlds. Emerich draws on myriad sources related to the notions of mindful consumption found throughout the LOHAS marketplace, including not just products and services but marketing materials, events, lectures, regulatory policies, and conversations with leaders and consumers. These disparate texts, she argues, universally project a spiritual message about personal and planetary health that is in turn reforming capitalism by making consumers more conscious.
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The Impact of Losing Your Job
Unemployment and Influences from Market, Family, and State on Economic Well-Being in the US and Germany
Martin Ehlert
Amsterdam University Press, 2016
Losing a job has always been understood as one of the most important causes of downward social mobility in modern societies. And it's only gotten worse in recent years, as the weakening position of workers has made re-entering the labour market even tougher. The Impact of Losing Your Job builds on findings from life course sociology to show clearly just what effects job loss has on income, family life, and future prospects. Key to Ehlert's analysis is a comparative look at the United States and Germany that enables him to show how different approaches to welfare state policies can ameliorate the effects of job loss-but can at the same time make labour insecurity more common.
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Intimate Politics
Marriage, the Market, and State Power in Southeastern China
Sara L. Friedman
Harvard University Press, 2006

On a visit to eastern Hui'an in 1994, Sara Friedman was surprised to see a married woman reluctant to visit her conjugal home. The author would soon learn that this practice was typical of the area, along with distinctive female dress styles, gender divisions of labor, and powerful same-sex networks. These customs, she would learn, have long distinguished villages in this coastal region of southeastern China from other rural Han communities.

Intimate Politics explores these practices that have constituted eastern Hui'an residents, women in particular, as an anomaly among rural Han. This book asks what such practices have come to mean in a post-1949 socialist order that has incorporated forms of marriage, labor, and dress into a developmental scale extending from the primitive to the civilized. Government reform campaigns were part of a wholesale effort to remake Chinese society by replacing its "feudal" elements with liberated socialist ideals and practices. As state actors became involved in the intimate aspects of Huidong women's lives, their official models of progress were challenged by the diversity of local practices and commitment of local residents. These politicized entanglements have generated what the author calls "intimate politics," a form of embodied struggle in which socialist civilizing agendas—from the state-sponsored reforms of the Maoist decades to the market-based "reform and opening" of the post-Mao era—have been formulated, contested, and, in some cases, transformed through the bodies and practices of local women.

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Kidney for Sale by Owner
Human Organs, Transplantation, and the Market
Mark J. Cherry
Georgetown University Press, 2005

If most Americans accept the notion that the market is the most efficient means to distribute resources, why should body parts be excluded?

Each year thousands of people die waiting for organ transplants. Many of these deaths could have been prevented were it not for the almost universal moral hand-wringing over the concept of selling human organs. Kidney for Sale by Owner, now with a new preface, boldly deconstructs the roadblocks that are standing in the way of restoring health to thousands of people. Author and bioethicist Mark Cherry reasserts the case that health care could be improved and lives saved by introducing a regulated transplant organs market rather than by well-meant, but misguided, prohibitions.

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The Market and Other Orders
F. A. Hayek
University of Chicago Press, 2013
In addition to his groundbreaking contributions to pure economic theory, F. A. Hayek also closely examined the ways in which the knowledge of many individual market participants could culminate in an overall order of economic activity. His attempts to come to terms with the “knowledge problem” thread through his career and comprise the writings collected in the fifteenth volume of the University of Chicago Press’s Collected Works of F. A. Hayek series.

The Market and Other Orders brings together more than twenty works spanning almost forty years that consider this question. Consisting of speeches, essays, and lectures, including Hayek’s 1974 Nobel lecture, “The Pretense of Knowledge,” the works in this volume draw on a broad range of perspectives, including the philosophy of science, the physiology of the brain, legal theory, and political philosophy. Taking readers from Hayek’s early development of the idea of spontaneous order in economics through his integration of this insight into political theory and other disciplines, the book culminates with Hayek’s integration of his work on these topics into an overarching social theory that accounts for spontaneous order in the variety of complex systems that Hayek studied throughout his career.

Edited by renowned Hayek scholar Bruce Caldwell, who also contributes a masterly introduction that provides biographical and historical context, The Market and Other Orders forms the definitive compilation of Hayek’s work on spontaneous order.

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The Market as God
Harvey Cox
Harvard University Press, 2016

“Essential and thoroughly engaging…Harvey Cox’s ingenious sense of how market theology has developed a scripture, a liturgy, and sophisticated apologetics allow us to see old challenges in a remarkably fresh light.”
—E. J. Dionne, Jr.


We have fallen in thrall to the theology of supply and demand. According to its acolytes, the Market is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent. It can raise nations and ruin households, and comes complete with its own doctrines, prophets, and evangelical zeal. Harvey Cox brings this theology out of the shadows, demonstrating that the way the world economy operates is shaped by a global system of values that can be best understood as a religion.

Drawing on biblical sources and the work of social scientists, Cox points to many parallels between the development of Christianity and the Market economy. It is only by understanding how the Market reached its “divine” status that can we hope to restore it to its proper place as servant of humanity.

“Cox argues that…we are now imprisoned by the dictates of a false god that we ourselves have created. We need to break free and reclaim our humanity.”
Forbes

“Cox clears the space for a new generation of Christians to begin to develop a more public and egalitarian politics.”
The Nation

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Media, Market, and Democracy in China
Between the Party Line and the Bottom Line
Yuezhi Zhao
University of Illinois Press, 1998

How do market forces influence the media in China? How does the Party both introduce and try to contain the market's influence? How do commercial imperatives both accommodate and challenge Party control? 

Yuezhi Zhao interviewed a wide range of scholars, media administrators, and media professionals to answer these and other questions. Working in China in 1994 and 1995, she monitored media content, carried out extensive documentary research in Beijing, and held off-the-record meetings with Chinese media insiders. What she found informs an in-depth look at the intertwining nature of the Communist Party and the news media in China, how they affect each other, and what the future might hold for each. 

A rare on-the-ground portrait, Media, Market, and Democracy in China is must reading for scholars, media and business professionals, and policymakers who need to understand what happened to China and its mass media during a period of dynamic growth and change.

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Merchant Saint
The Church, the Market, and the First Lay Canonization
prudlo
St. Augustine's Press, 2024
Paul Voss and Donald Prudlo trace Western attitudes to money, merchants, and the market through 3,000 years of history. They focus their attention on one person in particular, Omobono of Cremona (1117–1197), as an axial figure in the wholesale reappraisal of the value of business, entrepreneurship, and white-collar work in Christian Europe. More precisely, Voss and Prudlo examine the evolution of the mentality of wealth and economics in the Catholic Church, beginning from the Scriptural disdain for material pursuits and moving to the eventually declared sainthood of Omobono, a lay merchant living amid the hectic rhythm of a life of business. As the authors note, "His story resonates today with an unexpected poignancy for the contribution it makes to the pressing issues of economic justice, free markets, work-life balance, the 'theology of work,' and Catholic history." The reconstruction of the socio-theological perspective of wealth is a fascinating contribution to contemporary attempts to reconcile culture, capitalism, and the common good. Omobono stands as the first lay individual proposed by the Catholic Church as a model of heroic virtue, and thought him commercial life came thereby also to be 'canonized' as a possible path to sanctity. 

Voss and Prudlo provide a rich resource for readers concerned with the proper aims and boundaries of a life in the world of commerce, the nature of work, the ethics of profit, the problem of money-lending, the virtues needed for moral capitalism, and the tension between otium and negotium. Voss and Prudlo have accumulated a veritable trove of primary text materials relating to the life of Omobono, and provide translations and commentary to complete their analysis. This fascinating account crosses the threshold of pure history and stimulates inquiry in the fields of philosophy, economics, and theology. 
 
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Moving to Market
Restructuring Transport in the Former Soviet Union
John Strong
Harvard University Press, 1996

Transport in the former Soviet Union is experiencing massive changes in the 1990s: government responsibility has changed from operation to oversight; competition in the industry is increasing; and alternative financing and investment methods are emerging. Moving to Market examines rail, road, water, and air transport in the former Soviet Union and discusses the policy issues involved in making a transition from an industry once entrenched in a centrally planned economy to an industry that can thrive in a more open market. The authors conclude that the raw physical capacity is in place, but that quality of service and product needs to be improved. In addition, price structures need to be changed to reflect real costs and market demands.

The authors cite the "three M's"--marshaling, managing, and monitoring transport resources--as critical for the development of the nation's infrastructure as it moves toward the next century.

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Music In The Market
Don Cusic
University of Wisconsin Press, 1996
Cusic examines the music business in the context of popular culture, the ways that popular music is disseminated in the American commercial market, the money flow, talent acquisition and development, artwork and promotion, and the strategies of multinational recording companies as they market music to consumers through media and retailers. He also discusses the marketing of specialty music—classical, gospel, jazz, bluegrass, rap, and folk, by small independent labels.
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Non-Design
Architecture, Liberalism, and the Market
Anthony Fontenot
University of Chicago Press, 2021
Anthony Fontenot’s staggeringly ambitious book uncovers the surprisingly libertarian heart  of the most influential British and American architectural and urbanist discourses of the postwar period, expressed as a critique of central design and a support of spontaneous order. Non-Design illuminates the unexpected philosophical common ground between enemies of state support, most prominently the economist Friedrich Hayek, and numerous notable postwar architects and urbanists like Robert Venturi, Denise Scott Brown, Reyner Banham, and Jane Jacobs. These thinkers espoused a distinctive concept of "non-design,"characterized by a rejection of conscious design and an embrace of various phenomenon that emerge without intention or deliberate human guidance. This diffuse and complex body of theories discarded many of the cultural presuppositions of the time, shunning the traditions of modern design in favor of the wisdom, freedom, and self-organizing capacity of the market. Fontenot reveals the little-known commonalities between the aesthetic deregulation sought by ostensibly liberal thinkers and Hayek’s more controversial conception of state power, detailing what this unexplored affinity means for our conceptions of political liberalism. Non-Design thoroughly recasts conventional views of postwar architecture and urbanism, as well as liberal and libertarian philosophies.
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Persons of the Market
Conservatism, Corporate Personhood, and Economic Theology
Kevin Musgrave
Michigan State University Press, 2022
Taking corporate personhood as a starting point, Persons of the Market observes the complex historical entanglement of Christian theology and liberal capitalism to shed new
light on their seemingly odd marriage in contemporary American politics. Author Kevin Musgrave highlights the ways that theories of corporate and human personhood have long been and remain bound together by examining four case studies: the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1886 Santa Clara decision, the role of early twentieth-century advertisers in endowing corporations with souls, Justice Lewis Powell Jr.’s eponymous memo of 1971, and the arc of the conservative movement from Ronald Reagan to Donald Trump. Tracing this rhetorical history of the extension and attribution of personhood to the corporate form illustrates how the corporation has for many increasingly become a normative model or ideal to which human persons should aspire. In closing, the book offers preliminary ideas about how we might fashion a more democratic and humane understanding of what it means to be a person.
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The Power of Mammon
The Market, Secularization, and New York Baptists, 1790–1922
Curtis D. Johnson
University of Tennessee Press, 2021

In The Power of Mammon, Curtis D. Johnson describes how the market economy and market-related forces, such as the media, politics, individualism, and consumerism, radically changed the nature of Baptist congregational life in New York State during three centuries. Collectively, these forces emphasized the importance of material wealth over everything else, and these values penetrated the thinking of Baptist ministers and laypeople alike. Beginning in the 1820s, the pastorate turned into a profession, the laity’s influence diminished, closeknit religious fellowships evolved into voluntary associations, and evangelism became far less effective. Men, being the most engaged in the market, secularized the more quickly and became less involved in church affairs. By the 1870s, male disengagement opened the door to increased female participation in church governance. While scientific advances and religious pluralism also played a role, the market and its related distractions were the primary forces behind the secularization of Baptist life.

The Power of Mammon is history from the ground up. Unlike many denominational histories, this book emphasizes congregational life and the importance of the laity. This focus allows the reader to hear the voices of ordinary Baptists who argued over a host of issues. Johnson deftly connects large social trends with exhaustive attention to archival material, including numerous well-chosen records preserved by forty-two New York churches. These records include details related to membership, discipline, finance, and institutional history. Utilizing statistical analysis to achieve even greater clarity, Johnson effectively bridges the gap between the particularity of church records and the broader history of New York’s Baptist churches.

Johnson’s narrative of Baptist history in New York will serve as a model for other regional studies and adds to our understanding of secularization and its impact on American religion.

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Race, Nation, and Market
Economic Culture in Porfirian Mexico
Richard Weiner
University of Arizona Press, 2004
Prior to the Revolution of 1910, economic ideals were a dominant mode of political and social discourse in Mexico. Scholars have focused considerable attention on the expansion of the market economy during this period—particularly its political, economic, and social importance. Richard Weiner now enhances our understanding of the emergence of modern Mexico by exploring the market's immense symbolic significance. Race, Nation, and Market traces the intellectual strands of economic thought during the late Porfiriato. Even in the face of Díaz's political reign, the market became the dominant theme in national discourse as contemporaries of all political persuasions underscored its social and cultural effects. This work documents the ways in which liberals, radicals, and conservatives employed market rhetoric to establish their political identities and map out their courses of action, and it shows how the market became an emblem linked to the identity of each group. Weiner explains how the dominant political interests—the científicos, the Mexican Liberal Party, and the social Catholics—each conceived economic issues, and he compares how they rhetorically used their conceptions of the market to promote their political objectives. Some worshiped it as a deity that created social peace, political harmony, and material abundance, while others demonized it as a source of social destruction. Weiner delineates their approaches and reveals how distinct notions of race, gender, community, and nationality informed economic culture and contradicted a laissez-faire conception of society and economy. By focusing on these rhetorical contests, Race, Nation, and Market offers a new perspective on social mobilization in late nineteenth-century Mexico as it also explores the related field of Porfirian economic culture and thought, about which little thus far has been written. In the face of today's controversy over globalization, it offers a unique historical perspective on the market's long-standing significance to political activism.
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Rembrandt's Enterprise
The Studio and the Market
Svetlana Alpers
University of Chicago Press, 1990
"Singularly interesting and stimulating. . . . A passionate and original work of scholarship."—Richard Wollheim, Times Literary Supplement

"With the publication [of Rembrandt's Enterprise], Svetlana Alpers has firmly established herself in the front ranks of art historians at work today. . . . The book is not a long one. Yet, there is more perceptive scholarship packed into its four chapters than is typically found in a whole shelf of the more common outpourings of academic writers. Rembrandt's Enterprise is less a book of archival discoveries than of fresh interpretation of the revered artist and his milieu. . . . Alpers makes us see how Rembrandt's complex and enormously popular art has embedded itself in our ways of thinking about who we are and how we live, even in the late 20th century."—Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Herald Examiner
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Revivalism and Cultural Change
Christianity, Nation Building, and the Market in the Nineteenth-Century United States
George M. Thomas
University of Chicago Press, 1989
The history of Christianity in America has been marked by recurring periods of religious revivals or awakenings. In this book, George M. Thomas addresses the economic and political context of evangelical revivalism and its historical linkages with economic expansion and Republicanism in the nineteenth century. Thomas argues that large-scale change results in social movements that articulate new organizations and definitions of individual, society, authority, and cosmos. Drawing on religious newspapers, party policies and agendas, and quantitative analyses of voting patterns and census data, he claims that revivalism in this period framed the rules and identities of the expanding market economy and the national policy.

"Subtle and complex. . . . Fascinating."—Randolph Roth, Pennsylvania History

"[Revivalism and Cultural Change] should be read with interest by those interested in religious movements as well as the connections among religion, economics, and politics."—Charles L. Harper, Contemporary Sociology

"Readers old and new stand to gain much from Thomas's sophisticated study of the macrosociology of religion in the United States during the nineteenth century. . . . He has given the sociology of religion its best quantitative study of revivalism since the close of the 1970s."—Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion
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Rewriting Capitalism
Literature and the Market in Late Tsarist Russia and the Kingdom of Poland
Beth Holmgren
University of Pittsburgh Press, 1998
In this ground-breaking book, Beth Holmgren examines how—in turn-of-the-century Russia and its subject, the Kingdom of Poland—capitalism affected the elitist culture of literature, publishing, book markets, and readership. Rewriting Capitalism considers how both “serious” writers and producers of consumer culture coped with the drastic power shift from “serious” literature to market-driven literature.
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Shakespearean Pragmatism
Market of His Time
Lars Engle
University of Chicago Press, 1993
Just as Shakespeare's theater was an economic gamble, subject to the workings of a market, so the plays themselves submit actions, persons, and motives to an audience's judgment. Such a theatrical economy, Lars Engle suggests, provides a model for the way in which truth is determined and assessed in the world at large—a model much like that offered by contemporary pragmatism.

To Engle, the problems of worth, price, and value that appear so frequently in Shakespeare's works reveal a playwright dramatizing the negotiable nature of perception and belief—in short, the nature of his audience's purchase on reality. This innovative argument is the first to view Shakespeare in the context of contemporary pragmatism and to show that Shakespeare in many ways anticipated pragmatism as it has been developed in the thought of Richard Rorty, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, and others. With detailed reference to the sonnets and plays, Engle explores Shakespeare's tendency to treat knowledge, truth, and certainty as relatively stable goods within a theatrical economy of social interaction. He shows the playwright recasting kingship, aristocracy, and poetic immortality in pragmatic terms.

As attentive to history as it is to contemporary theory, this book mediates between current and traditional accounts of Shakespeare. In doing so, it offers a sweeping new account of Shakespeare's enterprise that will interest philosophers, literary theorists, and Shakespeare scholars alike.
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The Signature Style of Frans Hals
Painting, Subjectivity, and the Market in Early Modernity
Christopher D. M. Atkins
Amsterdam University Press, 2012
This richly illustrated study is the first consider the manifold functions and meanings of Hals’s distinctive handling of paint. Atkins explores the uniqueness of Hals’s approach to painting and the relationship of his manner to seventeenth-century aesthetics. He also investigates the economic motivations and advantages of his methods, the operation of the style as a personal and workshop brand, and the apparent modernity of the artist’s style. The book seeks to understand the multiple levels on which Hals’s consciously cultivated manner of painting operated for himself, his pupils and assistants, his clients, and succeeding generations of viewers. As a result, the book offers a wholly new understanding of one of the leading artists of the Dutch Golden Age, and one of the most formative painters in the history of art in the Western tradition. It also provides a much needed interrogation of the interrelationships of subjectivity, style, authorship, methods of artistic and commercial production, economic consumption, and art theory in early modernity.
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Sovereign of the Market
The Money Question in Early America
Jeffrey Sklansky
University of Chicago Press, 2017
What should serve as money, who should control its creation and circulation, and according to what rules? For more than two hundred years, the “money question” shaped American social thought, becoming a central subject of political debate and class conflict.  Sovereign of the Market reveals how and why this happened.

Jeffrey Sklansky’s wide-ranging study comprises three chronological parts devoted to major episodes in the career of the money question. First, the fight over the innovation of paper money in colonial New England. Second, the battle over the development of commercial banking in the new United States. And third, the struggle over the national banking system and the international gold standard in the late nineteenth century. Each section explores a broader problem of power that framed each conflict in successive phases of capitalist development: circulation, representation, and association. The three parts also encompass intellectual biographies of opposing reformers for each period, shedding new light on the connections between economic thought and other aspects of early American culture. The result is a fascinating, insightful, and deeply considered contribution to the history of capitalism.
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Stewards of the Market
How the Federal Reserve Made Sense of the Financial Crisis
Mitchel Y. Abolafia
Harvard University Press, 2020

A fast-paced, behind-closed-doors account of the Federal Reserve’s decision making during the 2008 financial crisis, showing how Fed policymakers overcame their own assumptions to contain the disaster.

The financial crisis of 2008 led to the collapse of several major banks and thrust the US economy into the deepest recession since the Great Depression. The Federal Reserve was the agency most responsible for maintaining the nation’s economic stability. And the Fed’s Open Market Committee was a twelve-member body at the epicenter, making sense of the unfolding crisis and fashioning a response. This is the story of how they failed, learned, and staved off catastrophe.

Drawing on verbatim transcripts of the committee’s closed-door meetings, Mitchel Abolafia puts readers in the room with the Federal Reserve’s senior policymaking group. Abolafia uncovers what the Fed’s policymakers knew before, during, and after the collapse. He explores how their biases and intellectual commitments both helped and hindered as they made sense of the emergency. In an original contribution to the sociology of finance, Stewards of the Market examines the social and cultural factors that shaped the Fed’s response, one marked by missed cues and analytic failures but also by successful improvisations and innovations.

Ideas, traditions, and power all played their roles in the Fed’s handling of the crisis. In particular, Abolafia demonstrates that the Fed’s adherence to conflicting theories of self-correcting markets contributed to the committee’s doubts and decisions. A vivid portrait of the world’s most powerful central bank in a moment of high stakes, Stewards of the Market is rich with insights for the next financial downturn.

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Switching to Digital Television
UK Public Policy and the Market
Michael Starks
Intellect Books, 2007
Sometime in the next four years, in a move that is bound to anger consumers and endanger the careers of politicians, the United Kingdom plans to turn off its analog, terrestrial television and switch fully to digital TV. Switching to Digital Television argues that, in order for the initiative to succeed, public policymakers need to carefully consider competitive market forces and collaborate with the broadcasting industry.
This authoritative study of the government policy behind the switchover also draws on the United Kingdom’s experience as a basis for comparative analysis of the United States, Japan, and western European nations, all of which will face similar questions in coming years.
 
“The book provides an interesting and ‘different’ history of Digital Television, and if you want to know why and how the decisions were made, it deserves a place on your bookshelf.”– Jim Slater, Image Technology Magazine
 
“Michael Starks brilliantly describes the complex mix of Government and industry responses to technological change which have led to the digital switchover process in the UK.”—Barry Cox, Chairman of Digital UK
 
 
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This Little Kiddy Went to Market
The Corporate Capture of Childhood
Sharon Beder, Wendy Varney, and Richard Gosden
Pluto Press, 2009

This book investigates the way that corporations are strategically shaping children to be under-aged hyperconsumers as well as the submissive employees and uncritical citizens of the future.

Sharon Beder shows how marketers and advertisers are targeting ever younger children in a relentless campaign, transforming children's play into a commercial opportunity and taking advantage of childish anxieties. 

Beder investigates the corporate relations and ideals that infiltrate every aspect of our lives. She presents an alarming picture of how a child's social development -- through education, health care and nutrition -- has become an ordered conveyor belt of consumerist conditioning. Focusing on education in particular, Beder explains how businesses are taking control of more and more aspects of schooling, not only for profit but to erode state schooling and promote business values. Similarly, she shows how 'difficult' children are taught from an early age that pharmaceuticals can be used to discipline them or to make them 'happy'.

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The Tyranny of the Market
Why You Can’t Always Get What You Want
Joel Waldfogel
Harvard University Press, 2007

Economists have long counseled reliance on markets rather than on government to decide a wide range of questions, in part because allocation through voting can give rise to a "tyranny of the majority." Markets, by contrast, are believed to make products available to suit any individual, regardless of what others want. But the argument is not generally correct. In markets, you can't always get what you want. This book explores why this is so and its consequences for consumers with atypical preferences.

When fixed costs are substantial, markets provide only products desired by large concentrations of people. As a result, people are better off in their capacity as consumers when more fellow consumers share their product preferences. Small groups of consumers with less prevalent tastes, such as blacks, Hispanics, people with rare diseases, and people living in remote areas, find less satisfaction in markets. In some cases, an actual tyranny of the majority occurs in product markets. A single product can suit one group or another. If one group is larger, the product is targeted to the larger group, making them better off and others worse off.

The book illustrates these phenomena with evidence from a variety of industries such as restaurants, air travel, pharmaceuticals, and the media, including radio broadcasting, newspapers, television, bookstores, libraries, and the Internet.

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Tyson
From Farm to Market
Marvin Schwartz
University of Arkansas Press, 1991
Marvin Schwartz chronicles the story of Tyson Foods and its impact on both the business community and the poultry market in America in an entertaining and enlightening tribute to the Tyson vision and success.
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Vernacular Latin Americanisms
War, the Market, and the Making of a Discipline
Fernando Degiovanni
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018
Winner, 2019 LASA Southern Cone Section Best Book Award

In Vernacular Latin Americanisms, Fernando Degiovanni offers a long-view perspective on the intense debates that shaped Latin American studies and still inform their function in the globalized and neoliberal university of today. By doing so he provides a reevaluation of a field whose epistemological and political status has obsessed its participants up until the present. The book focuses on the emergence of Latin Americanism as a field of critical debate and scholarly inquiry between the 1890s and the 1960s. Drawing on contemporary theory, intellectual history, and extensive archival research, Degiovanni explores in particular how the discourse and realities of war and capitalism have left an indelible mark on the formation of disciplinary perspectives on Latin American cultures in both the United States and Latin America. Questioning the premise that Latin Americanism as a discipline comes out of the tradition of continental identity developed by prominent intellectuals such as José Martí, José E. Rodó or José Vasconcelos, Degiovanni proposes that the scholars who established the discipline did not set out to defend Latin America as a place of uncontaminated spiritual values opposed to a utilitarian and materialist United States. Their mission was entirely different, even the opposite: giving a place to culture in the consolidation of alternative models of regional economic cooperation at moments of international armed conflict. For scholars theorizing Latin Americanism in market terms, this meant questioning nativist and cosmopolitan narratives about identity; it also meant abandoning any Bolivarian project of continental unity or of socialist internationalism.
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Whoosh Goes the Market
Algorithms, Automation, and Alienation
Daniel Scott Souleles
University of Chicago Press, 2024
A vivid, fast-paced inside look at financial markets, the people who work on them, and how technology is changing their world (and ours).
 
Markets are messy, and no one knows this better than traders who work tirelessly to predict what they will do next. In Whoosh Goes the Market, Daniel Scott Souleles takes us into the day-to-day experiences of a team at a large trading firm, revealing what it’s actually like to make and lose money on contemporary capital markets.
 
The traders Souleles shadows have mostly moved out of the pits and now work with automated, glitch-prone computer systems. They remember the days of trading manually, and they are suspicious of algorithmically driven machine-learning systems. Openly musing about their own potential extinction, they spend their time expressing fear and frustration in profanity-laced language. With Souleles as our guide, we learn about everything from betting strategies to inflated valuations, trading swings, and market manipulation. This crash course in contemporary finance vividly reveals the existential anxiety at the evolving front lines of American capitalism.
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