Panic!: Markets, Crises, and Crowds in American Fiction / Edition 1

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Overview

During the economic depression of the 1890s and the speculative frenzy of the following decade, fiction writers published scores of novels that explored the new cultural visibility of Wall Street, high finance, and market crises. Blending literary, historical, and cultural analysis, Zimmerman investigates how writers turned to fledgling research in mob psychology, psychic investigations, and conspiracy discourse to understand how mass acts of financial reading and popular participation in the corporate transformation of the American economy could trigger financial disaster and cultural chaos.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Both a valuable contribution to the field and a methodological exemplar for further study. . . . Many studies provide context, but Panic! shifts seamlessly between strict historicism and the innovative, culturally specific histories necessary for a full understanding of the novels Zimmerman discusses. . . . Remarkably deep analyses."—Studies in American Naturalism

"An inventive and valuable addition to the scholarship addressing the interpenetration of economics and literature specifically and to studies of the modern United States more generally. . . . An imaginative and rich analysis of financial panic's literary coordinates."—Modern Fiction Studies

"A fascinating study. . . . Should be on the reading list not only of Americanists but also of other scholars interested in the intersections of fictional narrative and financial modernity."—Novel

"Provides fascinating readings of both forgotten writers and more familiar ones. . . . At the vanguard of an emerging scholarly interest in the culture of the market."—Journal of American Studies

"Rich in the anecdotes and details that capture the cultural context of the decades that straddled the turn of the twentieth century."—American Historical Review

"Panic is filled with keen insights. . . . It importantly resuscitates stories and recasts tropes from early twentieth century America."-Literature & History

"Provocative and thoughtful. . . . Zimmerman reveals a world of ideas that intellectual and cultural historians will find fascinating. . . . A worthy, fascinating addition to the growing scholarship that seeks to explore and explain the cultural history of capitalism."—Journal of American History

"Meticulously researched and equally well-written. . . . Thorough and masterful. . . . Zimmerman himself has scored a victory with this book. Panic! Markets, Crises, and Crowds in American Fiction is a winner."—Business History Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807856871
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press
  • Publication date: 5/29/2006
  • Series: Cultural Studies of the United States Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 312
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

David A. Zimmerman is associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

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Table of Contents

1 Panic and the petroleuse 39
2 I can do anything with words : Thomas Lawson's frenzied fictions 81
3 Frank Norris and the mesmeric sublime 123
4 Melodrama and the moral implications of financial panic 151
5 The Financier and the ends of accounting 191
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