Corporate Reconstruction of American Capitalism, 1890-1916: The Market, the Law, and Politics / Edition 1

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At the turn of the twentieth century American politics underwent a profound change, as both regulatory minimalism and statist command were rejected in favor of positive government engaged in both regulatory and distributive roles. Through a fresh examination of the judicial, legislative, and political aspects of the antitrust debates in the years from 1890-1916, Martin Sklar shows that the arguments did not arise simply because of competition versus combination, but because of the larger question of the proper relations between government and the market and between state and society.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a major work, its insights and reconceptualizations comparable to those of such books as Morton J. Horwitz's The Transformations of American Law, 1790-1860 (Cambridge, 1977) and Ellis W. Hawley's The New Deal and the Problem of Monopoly (Princeton, 1966). Like these works, Martin J. Sklar's book fuses legal history with economic and intellectual history. In addition, Sklar provides a powerful overlay of political theory. The result is the most arresting reinterpretation of the Progressive Era to appear in two decades." Thomas K. McCraw, The American Journal of Legal History

"Here Sklar exhibits rich and original insight grounded in political theory and also in an appreciation of the gravity of what was going on within the economy and the inordinate difficulty of coming to terms with it....Here Sklar has engaged, with remarkable wisdom and originality, the most difficult questions in one of the most complex periods of American history; and he has written a masterpiece that places us all in his debt." Thomas K. McCraw, The American Journal of Legal History

"In this richly researched and thoughtfully argued piece of work, Martin Sklar makes a major contribution to our understanding of antitrust policy in the period 1890-1916." Robert Cuff, Business History Review

"This book is a judicious, immensely learned, thorough, and, in many places, brilliant analysis of the regulatory response to the corporate transformation of American capitalism." Donald J. Pisani, Texas A & M University, in The Journal of American History

"Of all the theories of contemporary society we have, Sklar's, it seems to me, is the only one that even begins to give adequate attention to the continued play of private interests, not only in the economy but in politics and culture as well. If his interpretation is correct, he has certainly provided a key to understanding the twentieth century." Eli Zaretsky, Journal of Social History

"Even scholars who do not accept Sklar's interpretation will recognize his volume as a major work. Sklar has dug deeply into the archives and emerged with interesting and valuable findings." Robert Higgs, Critical Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521313827
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 484
  • Product dimensions: 6.26 (w) x 8.03 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface; List of abbreviations used in the footnotes; 1. Introduction: corporate capitalism and corporate liberalism; Part I. The Market and the Law: 2. Metamorphosis in property and thought; 3. The corporate reconstruction and the antitrust law; Part II. Politics: 4. The politics of antitrust; 5. Two progressive presidents; 6. Woodrow Wilson and the corporate-liberal ascendancy; 7. Conclusion: fathers and prophets; Bibliography; Index.

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