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history of capitalism



  • Who Gets to Govern the Global Economy?

    by Christy Thornton

    Johns Hopkins Latin Americanist Christy Thornton describes her book "Revolution In Development" and its contribution to understanding how Mexican officials fought against dismissive treatment from the world's leading economic powers as they sought a voice in shaping the international economic order. 



  • The Gadfly of American Plutocracy (Review)

    by Simon Torracinta

    A new biography of the social theorist examines how his approach to understanding a past gilded age can offer lessons for our present one. 



  • Eric Williams’ Foundational Work on Slavery, Industry, and Wealth

    by Katie Donington

    Debates over Eric Williams’s work have ebbed and flowed ever since he first published Capitalism and Slavery in 1944. His book inspired a body of historiography to which many historians of slavery and abolition have added their voices over the decades.

  • POLL: Have You Engaged with the History of Capitalism?

    by HNN Staff

    The New York Times' Jennifer Schuessler published a story in last Sunday's edition on the newfound popularity of the history of capitalism. "A specter is haunting university history departments," she wrote, "the specter of capitalism."This new history of capitalism integrates social and cultural approaches to economic history and adopts a strictly post-Cold War mentality. Gone are hoary Marxist bromides and questions about why socialism failed to develop as a political movement in the United States; instead, the new generation of history of capitalism scholars -- those profiled in the article include Julia Ott, Bethany Moreton, Louis Hyman, and Stephen Mihm -- focus on the practice of capitalism by the people in the middle and at the top, melding a sound knowledge of math and economics with race and gender analyses.



  • In history departments, it’s up with capitalism

    A specter is haunting university history departments: the specter of capitalism.After decades of “history from below,” focusing on women, minorities and other marginalized people seizing their destiny, a new generation of scholars is increasingly turning to what, strangely, risked becoming the most marginalized group of all: the bosses, bankers and brokers who run the economy.Even before the financial crisis, courses in “the history of capitalism” — as the new discipline bills itself — began proliferating on campuses, along with dissertations on once deeply unsexy topics like insurance, banking and regulation. The events of 2008 and their long aftermath have given urgency to the scholarly realization that it really is the economy, stupid....