Luther Hartwell Hodges Series on Business, Society, and the State Bankruptcy and Commercial Society in Antebellum America Format: Paperback

Edward J. Balleisen

Published by University of North Carolina Press
ISBN 10: 0807849162 / ISBN 13: 9780807849163
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Synopsis: The "self-made" man is a familiar figure in nineteenth-century American history. But the relentless expansion of market relations that facilitated such stories of commercial success also ensured that individual bankruptcy would become a prominent feature in the nation's economic landscape. In this ambitious foray into the shifting character of American capitalism, Edward Balleisen explores the economic roots and social meanings of bankruptcy, assessing the impact of widespread insolvency on the evolution of American law, business culture, and commercial society.

Balleisen makes innovative use of the rich and previously overlooked court records generated by the 1841 Federal Bankruptcy Act, building his arguments on the commercial biographies of hundreds of failed business owners. He crafts a nuanced account of how responses to bankruptcy shaped two opposing elements of capitalist society in mid-nineteenth-century America--an entrepreneurial ethos grounded in risk taking and the ceaseless search for new markets, new products, and new ways of organizing economic activity, and an urban, middle-class sensibility increasingly averse to the dangers associated with independent proprietorship and increasingly predicated on salaried, white-collar employment.

Book Description: "[A] fascinating description of business life in America from 1820 to 1860. . . . Balleisen has constructed a solid study of the seamier side of mercantile life in antebellum America, one well worth reading both for the elegant arguments and for the fascinating factual information it provides."--Journal of the Early Republic

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Title: Luther Hartwell Hodges Series on Business, ...
Publisher: University of North Carolina Press
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Book Description University of North Carolina Press 3/26/2001, 2001. Paperback or Softback. Book Condition: New. Navigating Failure. Book. Bookseller Inventory # BBS-9780807849163

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Book Description The University of North Carolina Press, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New edition. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. The culture of American capitalism and one of its most enduring features - bankruptcy The self-made man is a familiar figure in nineteenth-century American history. But the relentless expansion of market relations that facilitated such stories of commercial success also ensured that individual bankruptcy would become a prominent feature in the nation s economic landscape. In this ambitious foray into the shifting character of American capitalism, Edward Balleisen explores the economic roots and social meanings of bankruptcy, assessing the impact of widespread insolvency on the evolution of American law, business culture, and commercial society. Balleisen makes innovative use of the rich and previously overlooked court records generated by the 1841 Federal Bankruptcy Act, building his arguments on the commercial biographies of hundreds of failed business owners. He crafts a nuanced account of how responses to bankruptcy shaped two opposing elements of capitalist society in mid-nineteenth century America. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780807849163

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