dunnettreader + middle_class   41

G. Clark & N. Cummins - Malthus to modernity: wealth, status, and fertility in England, 1500–1879 (2015)
Journal of Population Economics
January 2015, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 3–29
Abstract -- A key challenge to theories of long-run economic growth has been linking the onset of modern growth with the move to modern fertility limitation. A notable puzzle for these theories is that modern growth in England began around 1780, 100 years before there was seemingly any movement to limit fertility. Here we show that the aggregate data on fertility in England before 1880 conceals significant declines in the fertility of the middle and upper classes earlier. These declines coincide with the Industrial Revolution and are of the character predicted by some recent theories of long-run growth.
Keywords: Fertility transition, Demographic transition, Preindustrial fertility
economic_growth  middle_class  article  19thC  paywall  16thC  British_history  fertility  marriage-age  social_history  18thC  status  economic_history  elites  17thC  demography  marriage  birth_control 
january 2017 by dunnettreader
Leonid Bershidsky - Germany's Middle Class Is Endangered, Too - Bloomberg View - May 2016
Manufacturing jobs. Photographer: Sean Gallup/Getty Images Print Europe Leonid Bershidsky is a Bloomberg View columnist. He is a Berlin-based writer, author of…
Instapaper  Labor_markets  labor  middle_class  Germany  job_security  wages  precariat  hollowing_out  manufacturing  OECD_economies  from instapaper
may 2016 by dunnettreader
Era Dabla-Norris et al - Causes and Consequences of Income Inequality : A Global Perspective | IMF Research - June 2015
Era Dabla-Norris ; Kalpana Kochhar ; Nujin Suphaphiphat ; Frantisek Ricka ; Evridiki Tsounta -- This paper analyzes the extent of income inequality from a global perspective, its drivers, and what to do about it. The drivers of inequality vary widely amongst countries, with some common drivers being the skill premium associated with technical change and globalization, weakening protection for labor, and lack of financial inclusion in developing countries. We find that increasing the income share of the poor and the middle class actually increases growth while a rising income share of the top 20 percent results in lower growth—that is, when the rich get richer, benefits do not trickle down. This suggests that policies need to be country specific but should focus on raising the income share of the poor, and ensuring there is no hollowing out of the middle class. To tackle inequality, financial inclusion is imperative in emerging and developing countries while in advanced economies, policies should focus on raising human capital and skills and making tax systems more progressive. (Duh!) -- didn't download
paper  IMF  economic_growth  inequality  OECD_economies  LDCs  emerging_markets  fiscal_policy  labor  labor_standards  supply-side  tax_policy  access_to_finance  poverty  working_class  middle_class  trickle-down 
july 2015 by dunnettreader
Frédérique Leblanc , review essay - The FNAC: A Story of Standardization - Books & ideas - 5 January 2011
Reviewed: Vincent Chabault, La FNAC, entre commerce et culture, Paris, Puf, 2010. 272p., 25 €. -- What traces remain of the two individuals, both former Trotskyites, who founded the FNAC in 1954? What role did the FNAC play in the commodification of culture, and what remains of the company’s original mission? Who are the company’s employees, and under what conditions do they work? Vincent Chabault’s recent book retraces the history of this company, which has received as much high praise over the years as virulent criticism. Two sets of questions have been asked. First, how was the company able to “absorb” changes in the business environment, and at what cost to its original mission? Secondly, what working at the FNAC has meant to two generations of the firm’s employees? -- interesting on growth of the culturally middle class in the post-war period, -- as in the US with growth, stagnation and polarization of what were originally knowledge worker jobs strongly attached to the firm with significant worker autonomy and internal advancement into "management" and disengaged interchangeable low paid low skilled staff
books  reviews  20thC  social_history  France  business_practices  labor  middle_class  economic_culture  culture_industries  firms-organization  business-norms  business_history  unions 
june 2015 by dunnettreader
Grateful in Baltimore | Economic Principals
The news from Baltimore had seemed pretty bleak until Friday, when a 35-year-old city prosecutor brought charges against six police officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray last month. An attorney for the Fraternal Order of Police in Baltimore complained of an “egregious rush to judgment.” Those developments got me thinking about some other measures that have been taken over the years to improve civic life in the United States. Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn James Mosby grew up in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston. He mother, father, aunts, and uncles were Boston police officers. Her grandfather, Prescott Thompson, helped organize the Massachusetts Association of Minority Law Enforcement Officers, in 1968. -- Walsh tracks the steps Mosby took to get her where she now is -- a combination of hard work, talent, and deliberate openings of opportunities that had been foreclosed to women and blacks. He ebds, after a series of stats that show conditions, despite being dreadful in Freddie Gray's neighborhood, have improved significantly due to hard work of reformers over decades and changes in government policies. He ends with a blast at those who would blame the financial crisis on CRA -- instead he thinks that the implementation (albeit too little and too slow) has been one of great policy success stories in halting and beginning to reverse the deliberate, racist obstacles to wealth accumulation of African-Americans. -- saved to Instapaper
US_history  US_economy  US_politics  US_politics-race  urban_politics  War_on_Poverty  affirmative_action  segregation  discrimination  housing  African-Americans  poverty  middle_class  banking  credit  access_to_finance  savings  central_government  local_government  local_politics  Instapaper  from instapaper
june 2015 by dunnettreader
Bill Gale and David John - Retirement Security a Priority in the 2015 State of the Union | Brookings Institution - Jan 2015
In the 2015 State of the Union Address, President Obama made retirement security a priority for his Administration by promoting the Automatic IRA, a retirement savings plan that originated at the Retirement Security Project. The proposals would increase the ability of part-time workers to join their employer’s plan and improve tax incentives for businesses that either start an Automatic IRA or other type of retirement plan or add automatic enrollment to an existing plan
Obama_administration  tax_policy  retirement  savings  middle_class  SMEs  labor_standards 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Andrew Sprung - Reagan Revolution rollback | xpostfactoid - Jan 2015
Thanks largely to Piketty it's become increasingly clear that in the Reagan Revolution, middle class America sold its birthright for a mess of supply-side pottage. Dems willingness to credit GOP dogma -- raising taxes on high incomes and investment gains inhibits growth, deregulation spurs it -- are melting away. Post midterm losses, Dems are beginning to heighten rather than soft-pedal the policy contrasts between the parties. Wounded politically by perceptions that the ACA helps the poor at the expense of working people, they are looking for proposals attractive to the middle class. Emboldened by accelerating growth and employment gains, they are perhaps shedding inhibitions about leveling the playing field between workers and management. (..)To mess up my timeline a bit, Obama delivered a Pikettian narrative in Dec 2013 ..should have been a landmark speech on inequality (..) if he (and Dems) hadn't (tried to) protect their Senate majority. [In the Dec 2013 soeech] Obama zeroed in on policy choices. "As values of community broke down and competitive pressure increased, businesses lobbied Washington to weaken unions and the value of the minimum wage. As the trickle-down ideology became more prominent, taxes were slashes for the wealthiest while investments in things that make us all richer, like schools and infrastructure, were allowed to wither. And for a certain period of time we could ignore this weakening economic foundation (..) But when the music stopped and the crisis hit, millions of families were stripped of whatever cushion they had left. And the result is an economy that’s become profoundly unequal and families that are more insecure. -- terrific links roundup
US_economy  US_politics  Obama  Obama_administration  Reagan  supply-side  trickle-down  neoliberalism  inequality  middle_class  wages  wages-minimum  labor  labor_law  labor_share  labor_standards  Labor_markets  investment  executive_compensation  1-percent  infrastructure  education  education-higher  civic_virtue  common_good  Piketty  economic_growth  economic_culture  distribution-income  distribution-wealth  unemployment  health_care  public_goods  public_opinion  public_policy  elections  political_culture  political_economy  political_discourse  political_participation  Pocket 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
"No, the Internet Is Not Killing Culture" - Evan Kindley on Scott Timberg's Culture Crash: The Killing of the Creative Class | Slate Jan 2015
Scott Timberg’s Culture Crash begins with a harrowing and by now familiar personal narrative of the Great Recession. In 2008, Timberg, an arts reporter for the Los Angeles Times, was laid off, a casualty of the infamous Sam Zell regime; soon after, the bank foreclosed on his family’s house. These back-to-back misfortunes made Timberg worry about more than making ends meet: They shook his faith in the entire enterprise of American creativity. “I saw myself in the third generation of people who had worked in culture without either striking it rich or going broke,” he writes, but such a career path no longer seemed available in the 21st century, and he wanted to understand why. Though there was a temptation to blame the awesome leveling power of the Internet, he concluded that “this was about more than just technology. … Some of the causes were as new as file sharing; others were older than the nation. Some were cyclical, and would pass in a few years; others were structural and would get worse with time.” -- Kindley points out that precarious living of creative workers is the historical norm, and the few decades in the 2nd half of the 20thC during which a reasonably talented, reasonably hard-working writer, artist etc might be able to have a reasonably secure middle class life was the extreme exception. He also shows how Timberg is mostly writing about the bubble he lives in, so doesn't "get" the experiences of even his contemporaries who weren't middle class white males.
Instapaper  books  reviews  cultural_history  cultural_critique  literary_history  art_history  journalism  lit_crit  middle_class  post-WWII  Internet  media  competition  patrons  1-percent  patronage-artistic  creativity  creative_economy  from instapaper
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Garicano, Luis and Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban (2014) - Knowledge-based hierarchies: using organizations to understand the economy - LSE Research Online
Via Economic Principals -- We argue that incorporating the decision of how to organize the acquisition, use, and communication of knowledge into economic models is essential to understand a wide variety of economic phenomena. We survey the literature that has used knowledge-based hierarchies to study issues like the evolution of wage inequality, the growth and productivity of firms, economic development, the gains from international trade, as well as offshoring and the formation of international production teams, among many others. We also review the nascent empirical literature that has, so far, confirmed the importance of organizational decisions and many of its more salient implications. - downloaded to iPhone
paper  lit_survey  economic_theory  economic_growth  productivity  inequality  labor  wages  supply_chains  teams  off-shoring  trade  emerging_markets  corporate_finance  development  MNCs  power  power-asymetric  firm-theory  organization  hierarchy  know-how  technology  innovation  superstars  middle_class  working_class  social_stratification  social_theory  institutional_economics  globalization  economy_of_scale  increasing_returns  IP  downloaded 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Twin Engines: How Consumer Spending and Commodities Drive Indonesia's Growth - Knowledge@Wharton - June 2012
a few years old, pre elections and commodity price declines, but interesting stats on how growth was continuing post global financial crisis - the energy, infrastructure & transport pressures to meet growing middle class demand are going to be severe
Asia-Pacific  Indonesia  economic_growth  emerging_markets  commodities  consumer_demand  middle_class 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Paul Krugmam blog - Recent History in One Chart (Branko Milanovic global inequality trends) | NYTimes.com Jan 2015
A number of people have been putting up candidates for chart of the year. For me, the big chart of 2014 wasn’t actually from 2014 — it was from earlier work (pdf) by Branko Milanovic, which I somehow didn’t see until a few months ago. It shows income growth since 1988 by percentiles of the world income distribution (as opposed to national distributions): {chart} What you see is the surge by the global elite (the top 0.1, 0.01, etc. would be doing even better than his top 1), plus the dramatic rise of many but not all people in emerging markets. In between is what Branko suggests corresponds to the US lower-middle class, but what I’d say corresponds to advanced-country working classes in general, at least if you add post-2008 data with the effects of austerity. I’d call it the valley of despond, and I think it’s going to be a crucial factor in developments over the next few years.
economic_history  post-Cold_War  globalization  20thC  21stC  economic_growth  inequality  labor  wages  middle_class  OECD_economies  emerging_markets  LDCs  capital  profit  plutocracy  China  India  political_economy  poverty  stagnation  downloaded 
january 2015 by dunnettreader
Gerald Newman - Voltaire in Victorian Historiography | JSTOR: The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 49, No. 4, On Demand Supplement (Dec., 1977), pp. D1345-D1359
Type script supplement - Page Count: 15 - emergence mid-century of freethought along with cultural and social critique of the smug, moralistic rising money-grubbing middle class - after Burke and the French Revolution the sort of scepticism of a Hume or Gibbon was hushed or condemned, and open freethinkers from Godwin to Mill were ostracized and attacked as immoral monsters. Newman thinks that the intellectual shift away from the post revolutionary moral straitjacket on social, religious and philosophical thought is well-known but hasn't focused on the roles of historiography in this shift of intellectual milieu, hence Voltaire and the Victorians. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  intellectual_history  cultural_history  literary_history  historiography-19thC  19thC  English_lit  cultural_critique  British_history  religious_history  religious_culture  religion-established  religious_belief  Biblical_criticism  Biblical_authority  free-thinkers  Voltaire  Carlyle  Emerson  Dickens  Trollope  Bagehot  Stephen_Leslie  middle_class  atheism_panic  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
october 2014 by dunnettreader
Philip T. Hoffman, Gilles Postel-Vinay, Jean-Laurent Rosenthal - Surviving Large Losses: Financial Crises, the Middle Class, and the Development of Capital Markets (2009) | Harvard University Press
Since they're experts on especially French economic history from the 17thC onwards, the political economy approach should be interesting. **--** 1. The Political Economy of Financial Crises. -- 2. Information and Crises. -- 3. Crises and the Middle Class. -- 4. What Happens after Crises. -- 5. Financial Intermediaries and the Demand for Change. -- 6. Governments and the Demand for Reform. -- Conclusion: The Lessons of History
books  kindle-available  economic_history  economic_policy  political_economy  financial_system  financial_crisis  financial_sector_development  capital_markets  banking  middle_class  leverage  debtors  creditors  sovereign_debt  reform-economic  reform-political  distribution-wealth 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Lant Pritchett -The Politics of Penurious Poverty Lines (Part II) Strange Bedfellows | Center For Global Development September 2014
Re unholy alliance in US, Europe and Japan between advocates for the destitute, fiscal realists and post-materialists -- I argue the success of the "advocates for the destitute" is the result of a coalition of strange bedfellows that actually bring the political heft in rich countries and use the rhetoric of the "advocates" as cover. The fiscal realists and post-materialists like penurious poverty lines not because they put more attention on the poor [the advocates' rationalization of using the poorest of the poor as a PR target], but because they take income gains to everyone else off the table by making a small deal of big differences in incomes between the “middle class” in Ethiopia or India and those of the rich countries. Reframing the “center” of the development agenda around an arbitrary poverty measure that eliminates 5 billion people from “development” is a political master-stroke for the fiscal realists. The advocates of penurious poverty lines create political space for fiscal realists to posture as “pro-development” (and not just hard-hearted or fiscally strapped) while arguing that “development assistance” hasn’t gone to “the poor” (by this new arbitrary measure) and hence with “focus,” agencies need less resources. “Extreme poverty” is a boon for post-materialists in promoting their goals as it manages to take the concerns of large majorities in developing countries in favor of rapid material progress (prioritized at their existing material conditions over other legitimate goals) off the table as their income gains don’t “count” as development progress as they are not “poor.”
post-2015_agenda  development  poverty  global_governance  emerging_markets  OECD_economies  aid  conservatism  values  environment  sustainability  welfare  technical_assistance  technology_transfer  middle_class  international_organizations  UN 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Lant Pritchett - Politics of Penurious Poverty Lines (Part I) | Center For Global Development -September 2014
There are three good reasons why gains to those between the 40th and 80th percentile of the income/consumption distribution need to be central to a global development agenda. -- 1. there is at least a rhetorical consensus on two points: one, that aid effectiveness is requires “country ownership,” and two, governments should reflect the wishes of their citizens (some would simplify this to “democracy”). How can a democratically elected government be expected to “own” a global development agenda centered on a goal that excludes their middle class .. and not on policies that promote the general well-being of all citizens. 2. the consumption of the median person in developing countries is itself a good development target. Birdsall and Meyer (2014) show that, compared to even the poorest in rich countries, the median in developing countries have very low consumption - the poorest income quintile in the USA is 15 times higher than the consumption of the median person in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, or Nigeria and almost 10 times higher than even the median person in “middle income” countries like Egypt or China. No one in US politics claims the consumption of the US median household at $39 dollars a day is “too rich” to merit concern. 3. many have argued that having a functional and prospering “middle class” is instrumentally essential to development and functioning governance and hence benefitting the poor (e.g., Easterly 2000). Given the central role that “good governance” and “building institutions” has acquired in development discourse, try to imagine a successful strategy for strengthening governance or institutions that deliberately excluded the middle class. How exactly does one build “political momentum” to center a global development agenda on a goal that is not the center of the development agenda of any major developing country? And why? That is for part II.
development  poverty  aid  post-2015_agenda  institution-building  emerging_markets  middle_class  governance  OECD_economies  global_governance  international_political_economy  international_organizations  IFIs  UN 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Libby Nelson - The surprising truth about downward mobility in US higher education - Vox September 2014
In most developed countries, education builds from generation to generation: Adults often have more education than their parents, and they expect their children will be better-educated still — or at least they expect their children won't slip behind. But data released today from the OECD shows this isn't happening in the US nearly as much as it does elsewhere. America has more students falling behind their parents than most other developed countries. Almost 1 in 4 American adults age 25 to 34 has less education than his or her parents. -- worse for men
US_society  US_economy  OECD_economies  education-higher  education-women  college  mobility  gender_gap  inequality  middle_class 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
Danielle Kurtzleben - Why you need a bachelor's degree to be a secretary today - Vox September 2014
According to a new report from labor market research firm Burning Glass, firms are "up-credentialing": asking for bachelor's degrees for jobs that traditionally have not demanded a diploma. Taken with other recent findings about the causes behind weakness in the labor market, this tells a lot about why employers just don't value a college degree like they used to. Altogether, you could see this report as a signal of a skills gap — that there are too many English majors out there and not enough engineering majors, meaning the people who are good at dissecting poetry will just end up in low-skill jobs. But it may also suggest a newfound laziness among employers. It's not just that firms are using bachelor's degrees as a(n imperfect) signal of a good worker; they also may be looking for ready-made workers who can perform the job duties on Day 1, with minimal training or development. A bachelor's might signal not just higher quality to an employer but lower maintenance as well (rightly or wrongly). "Employers are increasingly keen on hiring college grads," says Matt Sigelman, CEO of Burning Glass. "But employers really are looking for people who can hit the ground running." And that means a big problem for people just entering the labor force, as Cappelli writes in a recent Washington Post column. "The real challenge we face is that if everyone is hiring for the ability to do a job, rather than for the potential to do it well, how does anyone get that initial experience?"
US_economy  Labor_markets  unemployment  skills  mobility  inequality  middle_class  college  education-higher  education-training 
september 2014 by dunnettreader
James Thompson - After the Fall: Class and Political Language in Britain, 1780-1900 | JSTOR: The Historical Journal, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Sep., 1996), pp. 785-806
The fall of class in nineteenth-century British history has become a familiar tale. Its rise in the historiography of eighteenth-century Britain has been less noted. This essay explores the reasons for this divergence and emphasizes its methodological origins. It highlights the need for a comprehensive history of class society and identity to replace the confused and contradictory picture of particular classes and communities that is currently on offer. To understand better the constitution of class society, it urges historians to talk less of consciousness and more of identity and to recognize that class is an imagined community much like any other. It proceeds to use this understanding of class identity to assess the turn to political language amongst social historians interested in class. The paper offers a sustained examination of the recent work of Joyce and Wahrman in particular and argues that insufficient attention has been paid to the variety of usable political languages and to the particular discursive contexts in which they are employed. It is argued that to acknowledge that class is so constructed is not to deny its existence or its importance and that historians need to look beyond political discourse to explain how class became so central to the self and the social in the nineteenth century. -- extensive references on British social history as well as postmodern historiography debates -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  historiography  social_history  political_history  cultural_history  British_history  British_politics  18thC  19thC  classes  class_conflict  working_class  middle_class  lower_orders  elites  elite_culture  popular_culture  bourgeoisie  identity  identity_politics  political_participation  political_press  rhetoric-political  aristocracy  gentry  gentleman  social_order  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
august 2014 by dunnettreader
Following British abolition of the slave trade in 1807, the origins and nature of popular abolitionism have been much debated among historians. Traditionally, religion was seen as the driving force, with an emphasis on the role of Quakers and evangelicals, whilst in the twentieth century social historians began to stress the importance of economic and social change. This article revises both interpretations by helping to recover and analyse the abolitionism of enlightened Rational Dissenters. Legal inequality and their 'rational piety' encouraged heterodox Dissenters to become active in a wide range of reformist causes. Owing to evangelical dominance in the nineteenth century, however, the role of Rational Dissenters was marginalized in histories of abolitionism. Recovering Rational Dissenting abolitionism underlines the importance of religion in the campaign against the slave trade. Since Rational Dissent was to a large extent a religion of the commercial classes, this article also sheds light on the hotly debated relationship between capitalism and abolition. -- extensive bibliography on jstor information page -- paywall Cambridge journals -- a return to Clark's view of radical dissent as revolutionary force in Ancien Regime Britain
article  jstor  paywall  historians-and-religion  revisionism  intellectual_history  religious_history  religious_culture  politics-and-religion  18thC  British_history  British_politics  Atlantic  West_Indies  American_colonies  slavery  dissenters  Radical_Enlightenment  Price_Richard  Priestley  abolition  radicals  reform-political  reform-social  merchants  capitalism  middle_class  ClarkJonathan  Evangelical  conservatism  counter-revolution  bibliography  EF-add 
june 2014 by dunnettreader
David Cressy - Revolutionary England 1640-1642 | JSTOR: Past & Present, No. 181 (Nov., 2003), pp. 35-71
Both an historiographical review of the revisionism debates on the English Civil War and n elaboration of Cressy views that inform his work on the 17thC -- Sees decline and rise of Charles I position linked to explosion of revolutions in every category of English society - not only political and religious - and Parliamentarians failure to manage or bring under control. Civil War when governing class, long anxious re social change, took different sides in what to be done. The conflict continued to play out the next 2 decades. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  historiography  change-social  social_history  cultural_history  17thC  British_history  British_politics  English_Civil_War  religious_history  religious_culture  church_history  politics-and-religion  monarchy  Absolutism  mixed_government  middle_class  lower_orders  public_sphere  public_opinion  local_government  godly_persons  Laudian  Church_of_England  Puritans  Presbyterians  City_politics  merchants  mercantilism  Protestant_International  anti-Catholic  elite_culture  landed_interest  gentry  court_culture  courtiers  legal_system  legal_culture  common_law  James_I  Charles_I  downloaded  English_constitution 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
John Walter - Confessional Politics in Pre-Civil War Essex: Prayer Books, Profanations, and Petitions | JSTOR: The Historical Journal, Vol. 44, No. 3 (Sep., 2001), pp. 677-701
This article contributes to the debate over the value of petitions for the recovery of 'public opinion' in early modern England. It argues for a greater attentiveness to the politics and processes in their production. An analysis of a hitherto unknown draft Essex 'prayer book' petition explores the construction of contrasting royalist and parliamentarian confessional politics. A reading of the content of the petitions offers evidence of the popular response to the Laudian ceremonialism; a reconstruction of the politics of its production provides evidence of the attempt to construct a political alliance in support of the crown around defence of the prayer book; a reconstruction of the occasion for the petition - the capture of the Essex grand jury by the godly and well affected - suggests a very different, and ultimately more successful, confessional parliamentarian politics. In identifying the critical role played by the middling sort - translating their role in the politics of the parish to the politics of the state - the article argues that a marriage of the research strategy of the social historian with the agenda of a 'new political history' will help to establish the enlarged social depth to the public sphere in early modern England. -- huge bibliography -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  social_history  political_history  historiography  17thC  British_history  British_politics  English_Civil_War  religious_history  Laudian  godly_persons  Puritans  political_culture  religious_culture  petitions  Royalists  Parliamentarians  Church_of_England  local_politics  local_government  middle_class  public_sphere  public_opinion  Bolingbroke-family  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
Daron Acemoglu, Suresh Naidu, Pascual Restrepo, James A Robinson - Can democracy help with inequality? | vox 7 February 2014
Paper on NBER -- Inequality is currently a prominent topic of debate in Western democracies. In democratic countries, we might expect rising inequality to be partially offset by an increase in political support for redistribution. This column argues that the relationship between democracy, redistribution, and inequality is more complicated than that. Elites in newly democratised countries may hold on to power in other ways, the liberalisation of occupational choice may increase inequality among previously excluded groups, and the middle classes may redistribute income away from the poor as well as the rich.
paper  political_economy  democracy  development  inequality  class_conflict  neoliberalism  middle_class  redistribution  oligarchy  marginalized_groups  EF-add 
may 2014 by dunnettreader
Other People's Pathologies - Ta-Nehisi Coates - The Atlantic
Chait endorses a blunter approach: "The circa-2008 Ta-Nehisi Coates was neither irresponsible nor immoral. Rather, he had grown up around cultural norms that inhibited economic success. People are the products of their environment. Environments are amenable to public policy. Some of the most successful anti-poverty initiatives, like the Harlem Children’s Zone or the KIPP schools, are designed around the premise that children raised in concentrated poverty need to be taught middle class norms." No, they need to be taught that all norms are not transferable into all worlds. In my case, physical assertiveness might save you on the street but not beyond it. At the same time, other values are transferrable and highly useful. The "cultural norms" of my community also asserted that much of what my country believes about itself is a lie. In the spirit of Frederick Douglass, Ida B. Wells, and Malcolm X, it was my responsibility to live, prosper, and attack the lie. Those values saved me on the street, and they sustain me in this present moment. People who take a strict binary view of culture ("culture of privilege = awesome; culture of poverty = fail") are afflicted by the provincialism of privilege and thus vastly underestimate the dynamism of the greater world. They extoll "middle-class values" to the ignorance and exclusion of all others. To understand, you must imagine what it means to confront algebra in the morning and "Shorty, can I see your bike?" in the afternoon. It's very nice to talk about "middle-class values" when that describes your small, limited world. But when your grandmother lives in one hood and your coworkers live another, you generally need something more than "middle-class values." You need to be bilingual.
US_history  slavery  cultural_capital  culture-American  poverty  cities  middle_class  US_Civil_War  Jim_Crow  racism  EF-add 
march 2014 by dunnettreader
Macaulay begins the Victorian Age by G.K. Chesterton | Victorian Web
This Whig world was exclusive; but it was not narrow. It was very difficult for an outsider to get into it; but if he did get into it he was in a much freer atmosphere than any other in England. Of those aristocrats, the Old Guard of the eighteenth century, many denied God, many defended Bonaparte, and nearly all sneered at the Royal Family. Nor did wealth or birth make any barriers for those once within this singular Whig world. The platform was high, but it was level. Moreover the upstart nowadays pushes himself by wealth: but the Whigs could choose their upstarts. --- For the fundamental fact of early Victorian history was this: the decision of the middle classes to employ their new wealth in backing up a sort of aristocratical compromise, and not (like the middle class in the French Revolution) insisting on a clean sweep and a clear democratic programme. It went along with the decision of the aristocracy to recruit itself more freely from the middle class. It was then also that Victorian "prudery" began: the great lords yielded on this as on Free Trade. These two decisions have made the doubtful England of to-day; and Macaulay is typical of them; he is the bourgeois in Belgravia. The alliance is marked by his great speeches for Lord Grey's Reform Bill: it is marked even more significantly in his speech against the Chartists. Cobbett was dead.
19thC  cultural_history  British_politics  Whigs-grandees  Macaulay  Victorian  middle_class  Reform_Act_1832  Chartists  franchise  historiography-Whig  Chesterton 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Issue TOC and Introduction, Nicholas Rogers - Making the English Middle Class, ca. 1700-1850 | JSTOR: Journal of British Studies, Vol. 32, No. 4, Oct., 1993
Introduction (pp. 299-304) Nicholas Rogers [downloaded] *--* (1) "A Just and Profitable Commerce": Moral Economy and the Middle Classes in 18thC London (pp. 305-332) Susan E. Brown [questions "aristocratic century" - independent merchants and bourgeoisie in leading charities, urban politics, polite culture etc. Didn't fit a consistent deference pattern; members of middle class could be on all sides of Poor Laws, so Thompson's bipolar moral economy overstates lack of variation in middle and intermediary functions, especially when drawing on civic traditions that didn't depend on aristocracy leadership] *--* (2) Racism, Imperialism, and the Traveler's Gaze in 18thC England (pp. 333-357) Margaret Hunt [unenlightened middle class elements eg freemasonry could be as xenophobic as cosmopolitan; attention to racial, ethnic difference could also be used to stigmatise the poor and set middle class apart] *--* (3) The Masonic Moment; Or, Ritual, Replica, and Credit: John Wilkes, the Macaroni Parson, and the Making of the Middle-Class Mind (pp. 358-395) John Money. *--* (4) "Middle-Class" Domesticity Goes Public: Gender, Class, and Politics from Queen Caroline to Queen Victoria (pp. 396-432) Dror Wahrman [middle class as defenders of family, domesticity, separate spheres only after won political status in 1832 - nobody adopted Hannah More's vision until decades later - use of the term by others or as self identifier is all over the map, even in the same report or work, stabilizing only c 1830s] -- downloaded Rogers pdf to Note
article  jstor  social_history  cultural_history  political_history  political_economy  political_culture  18thC  19thC  British_history  British_politics  urbanization  urban_politics  urban_elites  middle_class  aristocracy  politeness  consumerism  travel  xenophobia  racism  poverty  Poor_Laws  merchants  mercantilism  commercial_interest  interest_groups  corporatism  free_trade  Freemasonry  gender  family  domesticity  moral_economy  creditors  debtors  dissenters  local_government  political_nation  oligarchy  Parliament  anti-Jacobin  Loyalists  American_Revolution  French_Revolution  imperialism  London  status  rank  nouveaux_riches  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Jonathan G. W. Conlin - High Art and Low Politics: A New Perspective on John Wilkes | JSTOR: Huntington Library Quarterly, Vol. 64, No. 3/4 (2001), pp. 356-381
Fascinating for mid to late 18thC issues for both Continental Enlightenment and British thinkers and artists re scope of public sphere and state responsibility for promotion of the arts, its benefits for polite culture including middle classes with polite aspirations -- Wilkes connections with philosophes including Holbach and Diderot -- and how Wilkes wove his political reforms and promotion of arts and industry together. Useful discussion of range of historian takes on Wilkes, who he mobilized, relation with older republican opposition and later dissenters and radical opposition. Hume opposition to Wilkes' anti monarchy and anti aristocracy republicanism leads to different assessment of progress in civilizing arts and role of doux commerce. Each historian seems to put Wilkes in their own narrative resulting in dramatically different assessments of both Wilkes himself and his impact. -- useful references -- Downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  political_history  cultural_history  art_history  18thC  French_Enlightenment  British_history  British_politics  George_III  Wilkes  Hume  Diderot  d'Holbach  republics-Ancient_v_Modern  republicanism  opposition  public_sphere  public_opinion  governing_class  political_nation  political_culture  accountability  Parliament  franchise  Septennial_Act  nationalism  national_ID  xenophobia  anti-monarchy  anti-aristocracy  middle_class  merchants  state-roles  Grand_Tour  patriotism  Prussia  Frederick_the_Great  Catherine_the_Great  Walpole  Walpole_Horace  museums  academies  bibliography  enlightened_absolutism  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Jessica Warner and Frank Ivis - "Damn You, You Informing Bitch." Vox Populi and the Unmaking of the Gin Act of 1736 | JSTOR: Journal of Social History, Vol. 33, No. 2 (Winter, 1999), pp. 299-330
This study examines the interaction between legislation and popular culture, with a particular emphasis on the extent to which popular resistance undermined enforcement of the Gin Act of 1736. It is argued that popular resistance, while significant, had no effect on policy until members of the middle classes intervened in an attempt to restore the social relations that had existed before the Act took effect. It was only at this point that the Act became a dead letter. In this role members of the middle classes functioned as mediators between two cultures, one plebeian, the other patrician. As such, our findings suggest that the dialectic of plebeian culture and patrician culture, as variously articulated by E.P. Thompson, may be excessively stark, especially when applied to a setting as dense and heterogenous as early Hanoverian London. Our findings also suggest that working men and women in the capital worked and socialized side by side, sometimes as drinking companions, and sometimes as professional informers. -- over 100 references -- Downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  social_history  cultural_history  political_history  18thC  British_politics  classes  class_conflict  lower_orders  middle_class  elites  public_policy  Parliament  law_enforcement  London  public_disorder  popular_culture  popular_politics  gin_craze  1730s  riots  moral_economy  bibliography  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
David Rollison - Exploding England: The Dialectics of Mobility and Settlement in Early Modern England | JSTOR: Social History, Vol. 24, No. 1 (Jan., 1999), pp. 1-16
Movement, change, uncertainty and unpredictability, the most obvious characteristics of English life between the Reformation and the execution of Charles Stuart, have been lost in the recent historiography of early modern England. From a post-colonial perspective, it is obvious that something very dramatic must have happened to turn three million English speakers into six hundred million and convert entire cultures to English ways of organising and thinking. Viewed from the colonies, England exploded during this period, and continued to explode for at least 350 years. Something very revolutionary must have been going on in England to make this happen. This paper explores the dialectics of movement and settlement in early modern England for signs of contradiction. -- impact on doing social history of postmodernism on thinking about geography, territory, "governmentality" reflected in archives that doesn't match lived experience, post-colonial insights -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  social_history  historiography  postmodern  postcolonial  social_theory  geography  territory  migration  social_mobility  political_economy  middle_class  peasants  labor  agriculture  gentry  colonialism  British_Empire  demography  emigration  population  urbanization  British_history  16thC  17thC  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Paul Langford - The Uses of Eighteenth-Century Politeness | JSTOR: Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, Sixth Series, Vol. 12 (2002), pp. 311-331
Politeness is a 'key word' for historians of eighteenth-century Britain. It implied a distinguishing vision of wider social concerns and less constricted cultural tastes than was attributed to earlier ages. What part it played in identifiable shifts of behaviour is harder to judge. Among people who served the growing commercial and professional needs of the day, its influence seems well attested. More problematic was its impact on plebeian life. Yet even here, there is evidence to suggest some degree of 'polishing' in line with contemporary expectations, to the extent that politeness itself ceased to describe social aspirations and became synonymous with basic standards of civil behaviour.
article  jstor  cultural_history  social_history  18thC  British_history  London  urbanization  professions  commerce-doux  politeness  elites  middle_class  lower_orders  bibliography  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Dana Harrington - Gender, Commerce, and the Transformation of Virtue in Eighteenth-Century Britain | JSTOR: Rhetoric Society Quarterly, Vol. 31, No. 3 (Summer, 2001), pp. 33-52
This article examines the shift in views of virtue in eighteenth-century Britain as the emerging middle-class attempted to legitimize commerce and forge a broader concept of citizenship. I illustrate how middle-class values were sanctioned, in part, by relocating the source of civic virtue from the public to the domestic or private sphere. During this transition, women came to be seen as the "civilizing" agents of society, and I demonstrate how this new ethical role prescribed for them was reflected and instantiated in eighteenth-century culture through specific pedagogical practices. By analyzing eighteenth-century conceptions of civic virtue in terms of how they were implicated in specific historical configurations of gender and class, I illustrate the need for further studies that approach ethics as a contingent, unstable category. -- downloaded pdf to Note
article  jstor  cultural_history  political_history  18thC  British_history  British_politics  commerce-doux  middle_class  gender  civic_virtue  domesticity  education-women  citizens  political_participation  moral_reform  morality-conventional  downloaded  EF-add 
january 2014 by dunnettreader
Abraham D. Kriegel: Liberty and Whiggery in Early Nineteenth-Century England (1980)
JSTOR: The Journal of Modern History, Vol. 52, No. 2 (Jun., 1980), pp. 253-278 -- by end of 18thC Whigs had won the battle over defining that ambiguous event, the Glorious Revolution, and had claimed the uncontested mantle of champions of liberty. And in this sense Bolingbroke's claim of the Revolution belonging to both Whigs and Tories, regardless of what theory was used to jusify was indeed out Whigging the Whhigs. But "liberty" had some suspect origins (noble and corporate privileges) by early 19thC and very ambiguous applications, especially in connection with that other ambiguous term property. Some good stuff on particular 17thC and 18thC moments in evolution of political language.
article  jstor  17thC  18thC  19thC  British_politics  political_history  political_philosophy  intellectual_history  language-politics  Whigs  Grey_Lord  Fox_Charles_James  Reform_Act_1832  elections  suffrage  aristocracy  elites  landowners  landed_interest  liberty  property  commerce  middle_class  civil_liberties  constituencies  corruption  hierarchy  deference  downloaded  EF-add  English_constitution 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
Matthew Kaldane: Anti-Trinitarianism and the Republican Tradition in Enlightenment Britain | Republics of Letters: A Journal for the Study of Knowledge, Politics, and the Arts
Citation: Kadane, Matthew. “Anti-Trinitarianism and the Republican Tradition in Enlightenment Britain.” Republics of Letters: A Journal for the Study of Knowledge, Politics, and the Arts 2, no. 1 (December 15, 2010): http://rofl.stanford.edu/node/68.-- In "Limits of Atlantic Republican Tradition" issue -- downloaded pdf to Note -- Writing in the opening months of the French Revolution and in response to the accusation of anti-monarchical republicanism, Joseph Priestley explained in self-defense that if he was a “unitarian in religion” he remained “a trinitarian in politics” The republican-leaning Priestley was making a subtle distinction, but if the image of a political Trinitarian who held faith in Commons, Lords, and monarch could concisely illustrate what was surprising, if not paradoxical, about the political outlook of a religious Unitarian, it was because the link between republicanism and anti-Trinitarianism was so common.  By the end of the century, in the paranoid 1790s—when, whatever his subtle outlook, “Gunpowder Joe” Priestley could be construed as a Guy Fawkes style terrorist—Edmund Burke helped defeat the Unitarian Relief Bill of 1792 in the Commons by comparing Unitarians to “insect reptiles” that “fill us with disgust” and “if they go above their natural size . . . become objects of the greatest terror.” Given the republican implications in the Glorious Revolution and the century of Enlightenment it helped set in motion, anti-Trinitarianism therefore presents something of a paradox: republicans were drawn to it in great enough numbers to make it an unofficial religious outlook of the republican tradition, but it was explicitly criminalized in the state that was more republican, at least up to 1776, than any other major Atlantic state apart from the Dutch Republic.
article  intellectual_history  political_history  religious_history  political_culture  religious_culture  republicanism  anti-Trinitarian  17thC  18thC  19thC  British_history  British_politics  theology  Church_of_England  dissenters  tolerance  Priestley  Burke  divine_right  monarchy  heterodoxy  Wilkes  Glorious_Revolution  French_Revolution  Counter-Enlightenment  anti-Jacobin  middle_class  downloaded  EF-add 
september 2013 by dunnettreader
Roger Boesche: Fearing Monarchs and Merchants: Montesquieu's Two Theories of Despotism (1990)
JSTOR: The Western Political Quarterly, Vol. 43, No. 4 (Dec., 1990), pp. 741-761 -- downloaded pdf to Note -- Although he did not invent the word despotism, Montesquieu more than any other author established it in our lexicon of political and politicized words. When we examine Montesquieu's concept of despotism, however, we see an attack on two forces undermining the status of the French nobility — an encroaching monarchy that sought to rule absolutely, and a tantalizing commercialism that threatened France with a licentious servitude. There are, as a consequence, two theories of despotism in the writings of Montesquieu. One theory, directed at his fear of monarchical power, is carefully developed, while the other theory emerges only obliquely in his ambivalent and anxious attitudes toward the new commercial world of the middle classes.
article  jstor  intellectual_history  French_Enlightenment  18thC  Montesquieu  political_philosophy  aristocracy  middle_class  Absolutism  commerce  despotism  downloaded  EF-add 
august 2013 by dunnettreader
Harold Mah: The Epistemology of the Sentence: Language, Civility, and Identity in France and Germany, Diderot to Nietzsche (1994)
JSTOR: Representations, No. 47 (Summer, 1994), pp. 64-84 From special issue on national culture before nationalism

Downloaded pdf to Note

Considerable discussion of French attempts to link epistemology (17thC rationalists and 18thC sensualist) with language structure - especially Condillac and Diderot. Voltaire and Frederick the Great prejudices pro French and anti German and Latin.

Aporia of civility - honnête homme was initially supposed to be transparent re virtue - by mid 18thC and Rousseau the aporia has become a total inversion- sociability as source of vice by encouraging misleading, self promotion etc

Further discusses French attempts to stabilize civility virtue by relegating politesse to the skeevy domain

Follows Herder, Fichte, Hegel who turn German syntax into virtue as closer to sensual experience, which they assert gives Germans access to supersensual and true inner sense of morality that French lack - according to Fichte they're trapped in nihilistic artificiality

Nietzsche shreds the German valorisation of supposed inner depths which aren't connected with transparent form
jstor  article  17thC  18thC  19thC  cultural_history  France  Germany  nationalism  language  epistemology  Diderot  Condillac  Nietzsche  Hegel  Voltaire  Frederick_the_Great  social_theory  politeness  elites  middle_class  salons  Rousseau  social_psychology  virtue_ethics  German_Idealism  society  alienation  moral_philosophy  downloaded  EF-add 
july 2013 by dunnettreader
Bruce Bartlett: 'Financialization' as a Cause of Economic Malaise - NYTimes.com
Economists are still searching for answers to the slow growth of the United States economy. Some are now focusing on the issue of “financialization,” also an important factor in the growth of income inequality, which is also a culprit in slow growth.

Lots of links - DeLong picked up most - see his Project Syndicate
Also ILO Global Wage Report downloaded to Note - see esp p52 re financialization as source of decline in labor share - The report estimates that 46 percent of labor’s falling share resulted from financialization, 19 percent from globalization, 10 percent from technological change and 25 percent from institutional factors.

Ozgur Orhangazi of Roosevelt University has found that investment in the real sector of the economy falls when financialization rises. Downloaded pdf to Note

Adair Turner - chapter in Future of Finance: What do banks do? Why do credit booms and busts occur and what can public policy do about it? - downloaded pdf to Note

Nick Hanauer Congressional testimony June 2013 - - downloaded pdf to Note

Jon Bakija, Adam Cole and Bradley T. Heim, financialization is a principal driver of the rising share of income going to the ultrawealthy – the top 0.1 percent of the income distribution. - downloaded pdf to Note

University of Michigan sociologist Greta R. Krippner supports this position. Paper from 2005 downloaded to Note

One main source of income for financial executives is fees paid to financial asset managers, according to the Princeton economist Burton G. Malkiel. Among the best compensated of these are hedge-fund operators, who typically receive 2 percent of the assets under their control plus 20 percent of any increase, annually.  Downloaded pdf to Note
US_economy  economic_growth  financialization  financial_system  financial_crisis  financial_regulation  banking  capital_markets  money_market  institutional_investors  monetary_policy  inequality  capitalism  corporate_governance  middle_class  development  EF-add  links  downloaded 
july 2013 by dunnettreader

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