Freaks of Fortune

Freaks of Fortune

The Emerging World of Capitalism and Risk in America

eBook - 2012
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"Focusing on the hopes and anxieties of ordinary people, Jonathan Levy shows how risk developed through the extraordinary growth of new financial institutions--insurance corporations, savings banks, mortgage-backed securities markets, commodities futures markets, and securities markets--while posing inescapable moral questions. For at the heart of risk's rise was a new vision of freedom. To be a free individual, whether an emancipated slave, a plains farmer, or a Wall Street financier, was to take, assume, and manage one's own personal risk. Yet this often meant offloading that same risk onto a series of new financial institutions, which together have only recently acquired the name "financial services industry." Levy traces the fate of a new vision of personal freedom, as it unfolded in the new economic reality created by the American financial system. Amid the nineteenth-century's waning faith in God's providence, Americans increasingly confronted unanticipated challenges to their independence and security in the boom and bust chance-world of capitalism. Freaks of Fortune is one of the first books to excavate the historical origins of our own financialized times and risk-defined lives."--Publisher's website.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2012
ISBN: 9780674067202
0674067207
9780674047488
0674047486
0674736354
9780674736351
Characteristics: 1 online resource (414 pages)

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