Conceptualizing Capitalism: Institutions, Evolution, Future

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Product Details

University of Chicago Press
Publish Date
6.09 X 0.99 X 9.35 inches | 1.97 pounds
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About the Author

Geoffrey M. Hodgson is research professor at Hertfordshire Business School, University of Hertfordshire, England, and the author or coauthor of over a dozen books, including Darwin's Conjecture and From Pleasure Machines to Moral Communities, both also published by the University of Chicago Press.


"There are a number of books that purport to consider modern capitalism, but none of these treats the subject so broadly or considers in anything like the detail here the history of social science thought on the topic. Hodgson's discussion of the many issues he treats is broad, thoughtful, and highly literate."--Richard Nelson, Columbia University
"This is a magnum opus if ever there was one. Hodgson gives you everything you always wanted to know about capitalism, from a heterodox evolutionary economics perspective. A book that is impressively erudite, deeply rooted in the tradition of the discipline and in economic history. It is also remarkably optimistic on the future of capitalism and the prospects of political reform to restore the historical alliance between capitalism and social progress."--Wolfgang Streeck, emeritus director, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies
"Hodgson's goal in Conceptualizing Capitalism is to clarify the basic concepts of capitalism. He shows the interconnections of such vital concepts as capital, money, exchange, property, and law, and how they work together to determine the essential character of capitalism. Hodgson draws on literature old and new in composing his definitions, and he reveals the many errors into which those who use language carelessly or vaguely inevitably fall. Economists, often preoccupied with mathematical precision, have paid insufficient attention to conceptual precision. This carefully-argued and ultimately convincing book provides a welcome remedy." --Bruce Caldwell, Duke University
"In standard economics, capitalism has become an ill-defined concept, its analysis flawed from the very initial definition. Hodgson's book reintroduces a sharp and precise definition, showing how a successful analysis of capitalism requires an understanding of the interactions of numerous complementary institutions, including sophisticated legal institutions. This is a remarkable and highly original piece of interdisciplinary scholarship that will greatly contribute to the understanding of contemporary capitalist economies.--Ugo Pagano, University of Siena and Central European University
"Erudite and thought-provoking. . . . [Conceptualizing Capitalism] is a stimulating, historically grounded exploration of the subject and a rewarding, if occasionally dense, read."--Wolfgang Streeck, emeritus director, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies "Financial Times" (8/17/2015 12:00:00 AM)
"A rich traversal of capitalism in its myriad dimensions. . . . The book visits almost all dimensions of capitalism as we may think of it from employment, labour, firms, finance and property to the aspects that arguably constitute the core of this groundbreaking book: the role of the State and law."--Wolfgang Streeck, emeritus director, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies "LSE Review" (1/21/2016 12:00:00 AM)