Tag Archives: economic history

Political Economy of Labor Repression in the United States

by Andrew Kolin* The task at hand is to place the political economy of repression within the contours of U.S. history and sketch in broad terms how, over time, repression is the product of dynamic and fixed relations between capital and … Continue reading

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Leveling mountains to define Corporate Liability

In the seminal 1909 case, New York Central R. Co. v. United States, 212 U.S. 481-499, the railroad argued that as a corporation it could not be held criminally liable for the unlawful acts (such as paying prohibited rebates to another company) … Continue reading

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India, Modernity and the Great Divergence – Why the Industrial Revolution and Modern Economic Growth first occurred in England

by Kaveh Yazdani*  How come the world’s eight wealthiest men are as rich as half the planet’s population? Why do the vast bulk of the super-rich come from the West despite the rise of Chinese and Indian capital? And why are … Continue reading

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How 19th century finance and housing associations shaped 20th century housing regimes in Germany and the United States

Why has Germany become a country of tenants with a housing policy directed at private and public rental construction? On the other hand, why has the United States turned into a homeownership country? In an interesting article, Sebastian Kohl (University … Continue reading

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Social Classes in Medieval Imperial China

Su Xun (1009-1066), a renowned writer of that period, presents a direct testimony on social classes and feudal system in Medieval Imperial China: “The fields are not the property of the men who till them, and those who own the fields do not … Continue reading

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Karl Polanyi on the Rise of Fascism and Market Economy

A spectre is haunting Europe and the world — the spectre of Fascism (veiled as defensive democracy and common-sense patriotism) and authoritarian neoliberalism (disguised as social protectionism and perceived by laymen as decisive populism). The bothering question of our troubling present is not whether history repeats … Continue reading

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Economic fortune telling: forecasting to profit

“The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable”, famously remarked John Kenneth Galbraith. “Professional” fortune tellers and clairvoyant have accompanied mankind, receiving great respect, throughout the ages. Therefore, one can say, it was only a matter … Continue reading

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Alexis de Tocqueville on democracy, materialism and political economy

Alexis de Tocqueville (1805 – 1859) was a notable French political scientist and historian, best known for Democracy in America, a perceptive and groundbreaking analysis of the social, political and economic system of the United States. This four-volume book is brimming with … Continue reading

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The politics of fiscal policies: the lessons of history

Throughout the recent years of the crisis, the EU bodies and the German leaders have constantly oppressed Greece. They have pushed Greek people towards the abyss of austerity in the name of “fiscal responsibility” and “self-evident economic truths”. But essentially, it is … Continue reading

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Law and labor in the American political economy

In 1906, a German distinguished (somewhat neglected) economist and sociologist Werner Sombart published Why is there no Socialism in the United States? – a book which will become a famous work on American exceptionalism in this respect to this day.  There are a number of … Continue reading

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