Description : The Oxford Handbook of the History of Consumption offers a timely overview of how our understanding of consumption in history has changed in the last generation.
Description : Although middle-income families don't earn much more than they did several decades ago, they are buying bigger cars, houses, and appliances. To pay for them, they spend more than they earn and carry record levels of debt. In a book that explores the very meaning of happiness and prosperity in America today, Robert Frank explains how increased concentrations of income and wealth at the top of the economic pyramid have set off "expenditure cascades" that raise the cost of achieving many basic goals for the middle class. Writing in lively prose for a general audience, Frank employs up-to-date economic data and examples drawn from everyday life to shed light on reigning models of consumer behavior. He also suggests reforms that could mitigate the costs of inequality. Falling Behind compels us to rethink how and why we live our economic lives the way we do. Copub: Russell Sage Foundation
Description : This book presents empirical studies of the rise, expansion, and influence of scientific discourse and organization throughout the world, over the past century. Using quantitative cross-national data, it shows the impact of this scientized world polity on national societies. It examines how this world scientific system and national reflections of it have influenced a wide variety of institutional spheres—the economy, political systems, human rights, environmentalism, and organizational reforms. The authors argue that the triumph of science across social domains and around the world is due to its institutionalized cultural authority rather than to its instrumental utility for societies or for their dominant elites. Thus, following the Stanford approach to institutional theory in sociology, the book emphasizes the symbolic or religious role science plays in the modern world.