Who Makes Cents?: A History of Capitalism Podcast (general)

We tend to think about the "gig economy" as a new development - brought into being by Uber and our smartphones. But Louis Hyman shows us the deep roots of casualized and contract labor, tracing the centrality of temps, day laborers, and consultants from the post-World War II years through the present.

Louis Hyman is Associate Professor of History at the ILR School of Cornell University and the Director of the Institute for Workplace Studies in New York City. He is the author of Temp: How American Work, American Business, and the American Dream Became Temporary. He was previously a guest on the first episode of Who Makes Cents.

Direct download: LouisHyman.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:23pm EST

Over the past few decades, financial companies have begun charging more and more hidden fees. Devin Fergus explains why Americans pay so many fees and how these fees function to redistribute wealth from ordinary Americans to the wealthy - and how this strategy has especially impacted black Americans.

Direct download: DevinFergus_-_10318_11.16_PM.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:35am EST

All too often recently, some have claimed that an analysis that is intersectional militates against one that focuses on class. Well, we’re very excited to bring you a special program this month. Rather than our normal interview format, we’re featuring a panel that took place at the University of California-San Diego. David was able to participate in this exciting symposium on the topic of race, gender and the contradictions of capitalism.

All the speakers also have recently released books. Ula Taylor is Professor and H. Michael and Jeanne Williams Department Chair of African American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. She is author of The Promise of Patriarchy: Women and the Nation of Islam. Barbara Ransby is Professor and Director of the Social Justice Initiative at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is author of Making All Black Lives Matter: Reimagining Freedom in the Twenty-First Century. And Charlene Carruthers is Charlene Carruthers is a strategist, writer and leading community organizer in today’s movement for Black liberation. She is author of Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements.

 

We’re grateful to the UCSD Black Studies Project, Scholars for Social Justice, and all the people who worked on the events, especially Dayo Gore, Sarah Haley, and Prudence Cumberbatch.

Direct download: Special_Episode_on_Intersectionality_and_Capitalism.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:42pm EST

For decades, consumers of second-hand goods have argued that purchasing used items allows buyers to opt out of capitalism, saving money and environmental resources in the process. As one thrifty advice blog puts it, “Buying used goods cuts down on manufacturing demands and keeps more items out of the landfill!” But what exactly is the relationship between the purchase and sale of second-hand goods and capitalism more broadly?

On this episode, Jennifer Le Zotte tells us about the sale and consumption of second-hand clothing in the twentieth century.

Jennifer Le Zotte is Assistant Professor of History and Material Culture at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. She is the author of From Goodwill to Grunge: A History of Secondhand Styles and Alternative Economies.

Direct download: LeZotte_-_72618_2.12_PM.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:06am EST

Just last week in the Supreme Court’s decision in Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, the court undermined the power of organized labor in the public sector by making it, for all intents and purposes “right to work.” As our former guest, Sarah Jaffe wrote in the New York Times about the decision: “the corporate class … and its allies on the Supreme Court have dealt labor another body blow.”

 

On this episode, we speak about the literal violence that can manifest on the job if oppressive workplace conditions are left unaddressed. Jeremy Milloy argues that workplace violence from the 1960s-1980s needs to be considered not only as a private matter, but as a matter of politics and economics.

 

Jeremy Milloy is a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the Frost Centre for Canadian and Indigenous Studies at Trent University. He is author of Blood, Sweat, and Fear: Violence at Work in the North American Auto Industry, 1960-80


When we think about the relationship between capitalism and the environment, it’s all too easy to see them as separate spheres bouncing into one another – capitalism devouring nature, like when a forest is razed for development, or nature threatening capitalist progress, like when a natural disaster later wipes out that development. Raj Patel and Jason Moore see the relationship as much more complicated, while also arguing that the environmental crises we face today are the inherent products of the way that capitalism operates. They trace the relationship between capital and the environment through seven cheap things: nature, money, work, care, food, energy, and lives.

Direct download: 7_Cheap_Things.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:07pm EST

The racial wealth gap is among the most dire problems in contemporary society. As of 2014, Black households had fewer than seven cents for every dollar owned by white households. This situation of racial wealth inequity is disturbingly similar to the one that existed at the end of slavery.

Today, we welcome back to the show Mehrsa Baradaran, our guest from episode 30. We speak to Mehrsa about her recent book about the history of the racial wealth gap and how Black banks—a solution that is often suggested—have instead operated as a decoy, and distracted from more far-reaching solutions.

Mehrsa Baradaran is author of The Color of Money: Black Banks and the Racial Wealth Gap. She is Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives & J. Alton Hosch Associate Professor of Law at the University of Georgia School of Law.

Direct download: Mehrsa_Baradaran_on_Black_Banks_and_the_Racial_Wealth_Gap.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:13pm EST

Tired of reading endless clickbait articles about which industry millennials are killing today? Our guest Malcolm Harris explains how economic restructuring and the ideology of human capital helped to create the millennial generation - and continue to shape the choices they have in the present.

Direct download: Malcolm_Harris_-_4118_4.44_PM.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EST

In the summer of 2014, activists in Ferguson, Missouri helped catalyze a cycle of struggle against racist policing, extractive fines and fees, and myriad other injustices that are rooted in racial capitalism and the state. Decades before this in nearby St. Louis Black women activists propelled another vibrant movement for justice and equity.

On today’s show, however, we speak with Keona Ervin about St Louis’s actually existing working class and the role of Black women activists played in shaping the struggle for economic dignity in the city.

Keona K. Ervin is assistant professor of History at the University of Missouri-Columbia. She received her PhD in History from Washington University in St. Louis in 2009. Professor Ervin’s main research and teaching areas are black freedom movement studies, urban history, black women’s history, and US labor and working-class history. She is the author of the forthcoming Gateway to Equality: Black Women and the Struggle for Economic Justice in St. Louis (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky).

Direct download: Keona_Ervin_on_Black_Womens_Activism_in_St._Louis.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:39pm EST

We often think of neoliberalism as operating at odds with the traditional family. Our guest, Melinda Cooper, shows why neoliberals and social conservatives have enjoyed an alliance over the past forty years, and how neoliberalism has long had anxiety about family and morality at its core.

Direct download: MelindaCooper_-_2618_5.38_PM.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:44pm EST

Consider the chicken nugget. Many of us can see its round shape in our minds, and recall its salty taste. But what is its history? And what does this history have to tell us about food and capitalism, and about one of the most devastating industrial accidents in recent U.S. history?

 

On today’s show, we speak with Bryant Simon about the 1991 fire at a chicken processing factory in Hamlet, North Carolina. For Bryant, this tragic accident has political and economic causes. And it reveals a tremendous amount the last few decades of U.S. and global history.

 

Bryant Simon is a professor of history at Temple University. He is the author of The Hamlet Fire:

A Tragic Story of Cheap Food, Cheap Government, and Cheap Lives.

Direct download: Bryant_Simon_on_the_Hamlet_Fire_and_the_Politics_of_Chicken.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:20pm EST

Popular discussions of U.S. politics often distinguish "social" issues from "economic" issues. Laura Briggs shows us how looking at recent U.S. history through the lens of reproductive politics challenges this division.

Direct download: LauraBriggs.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:09am EST

Since the most recent election, we’ve heard a lot of news about the so-called working class. But all too often, this term seems to refer to white men instead of the diverse group of people who actually comprise the working class. Similarly, in the years since the 2008 recession, more and more attention has been given economic inequality that has grown ever larger over the past few decades. On today’s show, we speak with Lane Windham about union organizing in the 1970s and how these efforts reveal necessary context to understanding the many struggles of the actual working class, and what this history can reveal about the growth of economic inequality since the 1970s.

 

Lane Windham is Associate Director of Georgetown University's Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor and co-director of WILL Empower (Women Innovating Labor Leadership). She is the author of Knocking on Labor’s Door: Union Organizing in the 1970s and the Roots of a New Economic Divide.

Direct download: Lane_Windham__on_Union_Organizing_in_the_1970s.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:09pm EST

Before Amazon bought Whole Foods, the shopping chain got its start as an activist business more focused on politics than profits. Join us to discuss the rise and fall of activist small business in last third of the twentieth century.

Direct download: JoshDavis.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 2:32pm EST

It has become well known that none of those most responsible for the 2008 recession have faced significant prosecutions or gone to prison for their actions. But one bank did face a severe prosecution in the wake of the recession. On today’s show, we speak to Steve James, the director of a new film about Abacus bank—a small bank that serves New York’s Chinatown community, and how they found themselves facing a harsh prosecution, and how they fought back.  

Direct download: Steve_James_on_Abacus_Bank.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:10pm EST

We often talk about "economic conservatism" and "social conservatism," as if they're entirely divorced topics. Emily Hobson tells us about gay and lesbian activists from the 1960s through the 1990s who understood sexuality and anti-capitalism to be inextricably linked.

Direct download: Hobson.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:30pm EST

In Nancy MacLean’s new book—Democracy in Chainsshe unveils a long history of efforts by right-wing officials and intellectuals to undermine democracy. She foregrounds the importance of the economist James Buchanan to this story. She shows us the historical context of how Buchanan came to be a key intellectual for those opposing school desegregation, unionization of workers, and much more.

 

Nancy MacLean is the William Chafe Professor of History and Public Policy at Duke University and the award-winning author of Behind the Mask of Chivalry and Freedom is Not Enough.

Direct download: Nancy_MacLean_on_the_Radical_Right_and_James_Buchanan.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:47pm EST

Why do budgetary crises tend to lead to politicians and business leaders calling for governments to tighten their purse strings? How can we understand austerity as politics, not just common business sense? This week, we welcome back Kim Phillips-Fein to discuss her new book, Fear City, on the fiscal crisis in New York City in the 1970s. 

Direct download: PhillipsFeinFINAL.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 7:21am EST

The name John Maynard Keynes is an important one in the history of economic thought. Keynes’s ideas became popular between during the interwar period, between World War I and II, as many sought to navigate the tumult of social and political upheaval elicited by World War I and the Great Depression. But our guest today, traces a longer tradition of a Keynesian sensibility—characterized by the need to maintain society—that goes back more than 100 years before this period to the French Revolution.

We speak to Geoff Mann about his new book, that considers what this Keynesian sensibility might be able to tell us about our current moment, the rise of Donald Trump, and the potential for revolutionary struggles. Geoff also wants us to understand the importance for Keynesian thinking for the dual crises afflicting so many today: economic inequality and climate change.

 

Geoff Mann is Director of the Centre for Global Political Economy, Simon Fraser University. He is the author of Disassembly Required: A Field Guide to Actually Existing Capitalism and Our Daily Bread: Wages, Workers and the Political Economy of the American West, and In the Long Run We Are All Dead: Keynesianism, Political Economy, and Revolution.


In our first interview with a novelist, we speak with Jennifer Haigh about Heat & Light, her novel about fracking in rural Pennsylvania.

Direct download: JenniferHaigh.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:36pm EST

The 1980s were a time of transformation for workers across the U.S., and flight attendants were on the front line of the struggles of the era, as they saw the impacts of deregulation, the breaking of the air-traffic controllers union, and the rising power of stockholders over everyday management of firms.

Our guest today, Ryan Murphy, shows how all of the elements coalesced with broader changes in sexual and gender relations. Murphy’s history of flight attendant activism shows how important it is to see all these elements working together. Both workers and bosses had different conceptions of the family, which each group tried to utilize to achieve their goals.

Ryan Patrick Murphy—a former San Francisco-based flight attendant for United Airlines and Council Representative for Association of Flight Attendants-CWA Council 11—is Assistant Professor of History and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana. He is author of Deregulating Desire.

Direct download: Ryan_Murphy_on_Flight_Attendant_Activism.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:08pm EST

How does the fact that banks do not have to make their services accessible for all of us impact ordinary people? Why should we see banks as institutions that must be accountable to the public, and what would change in American life if we did? Listen to find out!

Direct download: MehrsaBaradaran.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:08pm EST

In April, the high volume leak of the Panama Papers revealed an often unseen world of money and power. The leak of 11.5 million files came from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, which helps facilitate movement of money across accounts and borders, frequently with the goal of evading taxation and legal judgments. The leak placed the financial dealings of global celebrities and politicians, including Simon Cowell and Pedro Almodovar, under scrutiny. Vladimir Putin, though unnamed in the leak was connected to upwards of $2 billion of assets. And the revelations provoked such controversy for the Prime Minister of Iceland that he was forced to resign.

While the celebrity names got a good deal of the headlines, firms like Mossack Fonseca are instrumental to the creation of offshore tax havens. Our guest today, Brooke Harrington, set out to understand this world and the people who make it possible. She studied to become a wealth manager, so as to learn about the world of the global elite and how this labor force has contributed to global inequality. This study took her to 18 countries. And it offers a rare insight into the processes by which a small set of people control a good deal of the world’s assets. Like the Panama Papers, this research documents a world that is, as Brooke puts it, technically legal, but socially illegitimate.

Brooke Harrington is Associate Professor of Sociology at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. You can find out more about Capital without Borders here.

Direct download: Brooke_Harrington_on_Wealth_Managers_and_the_1.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:59pm EST

Why is health care in the United States so expensive? Why does the United States find it so difficult to provide quality, affordable health care to most of its citizens? What is the relationship among the government, doctors, and insurance companies? Christy Chapin explains how insurance companies became so central to the provision of health care in the United States.

Direct download: ChristyChapin.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 10:29pm EST

The recent years since the 2008 recession have seen a growth of protest movements. Sarah Jaffe’s book, Necessary Trouble, describes how people have been fighting back against bank bailouts, budget cuts, police brutality, and much more. Today, we reflect on this recent history of capitalism and what it might indicate about the future.

Sarah Jaffe is a Nation Institute fellow and an independent journalist covering labor, economic justice, social movements, politics, gender, and pop culture. Her work has appeared in The Nation, Salon, the Week, the American Prospect, the Washington Post, the Atlantic, and many other publications. She is the co-host, with Michelle Chen, of Dissent magazine’s Belabored podcast, as well as an editorial board member at Dissent and a columnist at New Labor Forum. Necessary Trouble: Americans in Revolt is her first book.

Direct download: Sarah_Jaffe_on_Social_Movements.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:22pm EST

LaShawn Harris discusses how black women in the early twentieth century engaged in the informal economy - performing work that wasn't entirely legal - to get by and get ahead.

Direct download: LaShawnHarris.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am EST

Who owns the U.S. public debt? Why is it such an important commodity in global capitalism? Why does public debt provoke such intense political debate? And how can the quantitative data on the ownership structure of public debt provide insights into these topics? Our guest today, Sandy Hager reveals answers to all of these questions and more.

Sandy Brian Hager is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University. He is author of Public Debt, Inequality, and Power: The Making of a Modern Debt State.

Direct download: Sandy_Hager_on_Public_Debt_and_Inequality.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:20am EST

Direct download: Amsterdam.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 9:39pm EST

Neoliberalism. It is a vexing term, especially for many in the United States. But it means to call attention to the policies that emphasized so-called free markets as well as the increased market regulation of society since the 1970s. Few texts have been as important for popularizing the analysis of the politics and economics of neoliberalism as David Harvey’s A Brief History of Neoliberalism. Published a little more than decade ago, we decided to speak with him about his important book and his reflections about the past decade’s political economy, and what has changed and what has not since the great recession.

David Harvey is a Distinguished Professor of Anthropology and Geography at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY), and the Director of Research at the Center for Place, Culture and Politics.

Direct download: David_Harvey_on_a_Brief_History_of_Neoliberalism.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:04pm EST

The history of nursing is inextricable from the history of capitalism and imperialism. Our guest today, Sujani Reddy, helps us understand the history of nursing through the lives and experiences nurses who migrated to the U.S. from India, and what this reveals about gender, religion, and corporate philanthropy.

 

Sujani Reddy is Associate Professor of American Studies at SUNY Old Westbury. She is author of Nursing and Empire: Gendered Labor and Migration from India to the United States.

Direct download: Sujani_Reddy_Nursing_and_Empire.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:21pm EST

Historian Sherene Seikaly uncovered a group of elite Palestinian men in 1930s and 1940s who articulated a national economic vision for Palestine before the founding of Israel. Listen to learn more about how debates about Palestinian independence from British rule hinged on pan-Arab ideas about class, trade, and profit during these decades in a story that moves beyond our contemporary understanding of Israel and Palestine.

Direct download: SeikalyFinal.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:10pm EST

Few social justice struggles have captivated recent political history like the broad Black Lives Matter movement. From the streets of Ferguson and Baltimore to campaign rally interruptions of leading politicians, we have seen people speak up in outrage about injustices of policing, racist violence, wealth inequality and much more. What does this cycle of struggle have to do with the history of capitalism?

In addition to these questions, our guest today, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, asks "Can the conditions created by institutional racism be transformed within the existing capitalist order?”.

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor is an Assistant Professor in the Department of African American Studies at Princeton University. Her book, From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation, was recently published by Haymarket Books.

Direct download: Keeanga-Yamahtta_Taylor_on_Black_Lives_Matter_and_Black_Liberation.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:18pm EST

We've been hearing a lot about economist John Maynard Keynes' midcentury economic plans for the U.S. since the beginning of the financial crisis in 2008. Are the measures that Keynes and FDR took to combat the Depression in 2008 relevant to the present? What is the difference between fiscal and monetary policy, and how might changing our national approach to the monetary supply help our economic circumstances? Listen to find out!

Direct download: Rauchway.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:00pm EST

What stories do we tell about finance? How does financial print culture shape our lives? Our guest today explores the narratives we have been told, and tell, about finance. A literary scholar, Leigh Claire La Berge writes about the representations of finance in years after 1979 and how many of the stories we tell about finance—that it is abstract and exceedingly complicated—took hold in this era.

Leigh Claire La Berge is Assistant Professor of English in the Department of English at BMCC CUNY. Her book Scandals and Abstraction: Financial Fiction of the Long 1980s was recently published by Oxford University Press. You can read more about her work here.

Direct download: 18_Episode_Leigh_Claire_La_Berge.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:04pm EST

Have you seen those Facebook memes floating around, arguing that we shouldn't support a $15 minimum wage for service sector workers because the military doesn't earn a living wage? Jennifer Mittelstadt tells us how these stark lines were drawn between the military and the civilian economy - and on how military welfare affects us all.

Direct download: JenniferMittelstadt.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 10:32pm EST

On this month’s episode, we talk to the journalist Mike Elk about a new group called Media Workers Unite and their “Louisville Statement of Media Workers Rights.” Media Workers Unite are creating a public conversation about the labor conditions of contemporary journalists, with an eye towards bettering these conditions.

Direct download: Mike_Elk_on_Media_Workers.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:22pm EST

Today’s guest discusses the history of sexuality in the workplace through the lens of male flight attendants. We speak with Phil Tiemeyer about the shifts and changes in the airline industry across the 20th century. Phil steers us through this history and reveals the importance and difficulty of braiding together race, gender, and sexuality in a study of the labor and capitalism.

 

 

 

Phil Tiemeyer is Associate Professor of History at Philadelphia University. He is author of Plane Queer: Labor, Sexuality, and AIDS in the History of Male Flight Attendants. You can read more about his work here.

 

Direct download: Phil_Tiemeyer-Podcast.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:01pm EST

In July, we joined our friends from Dissent magazine's Belabored podcast to discuss the history of capitalism and how journalists and academics writing about labor and business can work together. Listen to the live recording of our show at 61 Local in Brooklyn, New York!

Direct download: LiveShow.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:39pm EST

Today’s guest discusses the history of the coca leaf and the U.S. drug control regime. Amongst other topics, we discuss the importance of coca to both Coca-Cola and Merck and the pharmaceutical industry. For Suzanna Reiss, this provides a way to interpret the history of capitalism across the mid-twentieth century and after.

 

 

 

Suzanna Reiss is Associate Professor of History at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. She is author of We Sell Drugs: The Alchemy of US Empire. You can read more about her work here.

 

 

 

For our New York area listeners, we will be having a live conversation with our friends from Dissent Magazine’s Belabored Podcast.

 

On July 7th at 7 PM at 61 Local in Brooklyn (61 Bergen St.) we’ll be speaking with Belabored hosts Sarah Jaffe and Michelle Chen about the histories of labor and capitalism.

 

Direct download: Suzanna_Reiss_Podcast.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:01pm EST

Today's guest discusses the history of aviation and how this provides a lens to interpret the history of capitalism and U.S. foreign relations across the twentieth century. Amongst other topics, Jenifer Van Vleck tells us how the airline industry helped solve various political and logistical challenges for the U.S. government during World War II and how the airlines relied on the government and vice-versa.

 

Jenifer Van Vleck is Assistant Professor of History and American Studies at Yale University. She is author of Empire of the Air: Aviation and the American Ascendancy. You can read more about her work here.

 

Direct download: Jenifer_Van_Vleck_Podcast.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:20pm EST

Our guest today tells us that the seemingly straightforward field of logistics lies at the heart of contemporary globalization, imperialism, and economic inequality. Listen to Deb Cowen discuss how the field of logistics reshaped global capitalism, undermined worker power, and even transformed how we think about life and death.

Direct download: DebCowen.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 2:47pm EST

Kim Phillips-Fein discusses her book Invisible Hands: The Businessmen's Crusade Against the New Deal.

Today we'll focus on the history of resistance to the New Deal. Kim Phillips-Fein details how many of the most prominent elites had their ideas and practices shaped by groups that were part of organized resistance to the New Deal. She argues that this history helps revise common understandings of the rise of conservatism in the 1970s and after.

 

 

 

 

 

Direct download: Kim_Phillips-Fein_Podcast.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 4:59pm EST

Ever wonder what the Fed does and why? How are interest rates connected to how hard it is for you to find a job? We chat with economist Thomas Palley about how the Fed is a political institution that has betrayed its mandate to provide the highest possible rates of employment to American workers since the 1970s.

Direct download: ThomasPalley.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:54pm EST

Christina Hanhardt discusses her book Safe Space: Gay Neighborhood History and the Politics of Violence.

Today we’ll focus on how the history of quality of life policing connects to the history of gay neighborhood politics. By looking at the gay neighborhoods in San Francisco and New York City, Christina Hanhardt will also shed light on what focusing on real estate, housing, violence, and the politics of place have to do with the history of capitalism.

Direct download: Christina_Hanhardt_med_quality.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04am EST

Ellie Shermer discusses her book Sunbelt Capitalism: Phoenix and the Transformation of American Politics.

On this episode, we speak to Ellie Shermer about how local elites in Phoenix crafted a "business climate" that made Pheonix hospitable to industry and shaped both the modern sunbelt and contemporary politics.

Direct download: Ellie_Shermer_podcast_-_12514_4.47_PM.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 5:07pm EST

Andrew Needham discusses his new book, Power Lines: Phoenix and the Making of the Modern Southwest

Power Lines shows that we can't think of the modern southwest without the energy that makes such places possible. Through this, he knits together a metropolitan geography that connects Phoenix with the places where it got its electricity--most prominently, coal from the Navajo Nation.

Direct download: Andrew_Needham_podcast_128_-_11_3_14.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:02pm EST

N.D.B. Connolly discusses how examining the ownership of real estate in Miami changes our perspective on the history of capitalism and African American history in the twentieth century.

Ever wondered how real estate factors into American history? Curious about the impact of landlord-tenant struggles on the history of race in America? Listen to find out.

Direct download: NathanConnolly.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:43am EST

David Huyssen discusses how examining encounters between the wealthy and the working class in Progressive Era New York City challenges our perception of the period's reform.

Ever wondered what to make of the now-common argument that we're living in a "new Gilded Age," characterized by tremendous gaps between rich and poor? Curious how the Progressive Era might be a cautionary tale for the present? Listen to find out.

Direct download: DavidHuyssenFINAL.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 8:10am EST

Sarah Nicolazzo discusses how studying literature can shed light on the history of capitalism – and how the 18th century cultural and legal category of vagrancy shaped the development of labor markets.

Ever wondered about the longer history of police programs to push certain people out of public space - like L.A.'s Safer Cities Initiative or New York City's stop and frisk policy?  Curious how literature can shed light on the history of capitalism?  Want to know what Adam Smith has to do with the concept of vagrancy?  Listen to find out.

Direct download: SarahNicolazzoFINAL.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 6:24pm EST

Julia Ott discusses how the majority of Americans came to be stock owners.

Ever wondered how stockowners came to be some of the most important players in American capitalism?  Why do so many Americans own stocks and bonds, and how did we all come to be investors?  Who benefits and who loses in our system of investment?  How does our system of "investor democracy" shape American lives?  Listen to find out.

Direct download: JuliaOtt.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 10:25pm EST

Louis Hyman of Cornell University discusses the changing shape of consumer credit since World War II.  Ever wondered how the credit card came to be?  Who benefits and who loses in our system of consumer credit?  Or how debt shapes American lives?  Listen to find out.

Direct download: LouisHyman.Edits.FINAL.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 1:37pm EST

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