The Culture of the Market

Scholars have only recently begun to appreciate the extent to which the norms and practices that foster market societies have been shifting. Not only has ‘the market’ been perceived and represented differently in different epochs; it has also been experienced differently, brought into being within dissimilar political and social settings, and has given rise to new and various forms of intellectual and imaginative activity. The thirteen essays collected in this volume belong to a new historical endeavour deriving from the recognition that the experiences and feelings engendered by the historical development of market societies have been, and still remain, open to a broad range of interpretations. They share, too, the characteristic accents of a new approach to cultural history, in which careful examination of actions, texts, and artifacts is accompanied by an open-mindedness about what their examination reveals.

• Up to date collection of research into historical notions of ‘the market’ • Uses a wide range of European and American material • Should appeal to both economic and cultural/intellectual historians


Acknowledgments; List of contributors; Plates; Introduction: the culture of the market; Part I. Market Regimes Old and New: 1. The ruling class in the market place: nobles and money in early modern France; 2. Territorial gardens: the control of land in seventeenth-century French formal gardens; 3. Money, equality, fraternity: freemasonry and the social order in eighteenth-century Europe; 4. Market culture, reckless passion and the Victorian reconstruction of punishment; Part II. Personality and Authority in the Age of Capital: 5. New cultural heroes in the early national period; 6. Preserving ‘the natural equality of rank and influence’ liberalism, republicanism and equality of condition in Jacksonian politics; 7. Banking on language: the currency of Alexander Bryan Johnson; Part III. The Lens of ‘High’ Culture: 8. An entrepreneur in spite of himself: Edgar Dégas and the market; 9. A Yankee Diogenes: Thoreau and the market; 10. Need and honour in Balzac’s Père Goriot: reflections on a vision of laissez-faire society; Part IV. Agency and Structure: 11. The reformist dimensions of Talcott Parsons’s early social theory; 12. The strange career of The Lonely Crowd: or the antinomies of autonomy; 13. Persons as uncaused causes: John Stuart Mill, The Spirit of Capitalism, and the ‘invention’of formalism; Index.


‘ … impressive standard of scholarship … ’ Times Literary Supplement

Nøkkelord: Sosiologi Historisk sosiologi