Political History of the Economy
A Political History of the Economy
This course will examine how material life has been organized over the past several hundred years, since the advent of Enlightenment thought and practice. Its subjects include the history of the family, the market, property, land, work, slavery, money, machinery, the corporation, and the rise of a new science of economics itself. Such an examination of the social and ideological aspects of modern economic activity will encourage students to develop a critical understanding of the structures of power and authority in liberal society. Lectures will be supplemented by relevant secondary studies in history, sociology, anthropology, and philosophy (but not economics!) as well as primary documents that students will be required to read and analyze in writing on a weekly basis.