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June 20 , 2010

Concepts of Value in European Material Culture, 1500-1900


In contemporary society it would seem self-evident that people allow the market to determine the values of products and services. For everything from a loaf of bread to a work of art to a simple haircut, value is expressed in monetary terms and seen as determined primarily by the 'objective' interplay between supply and demand. Yet this 'price-mechanism' is itself embedded in conventions and frames of reference which differed according to time, place and product type. Moreover, the dominance of the conventions of utility maximising and calculative homo economicus is a relatively new phenomenon, and one which directly correlates to the steady advent of capitalism in early modern Europe. This volume brings together scholars with expertise in a variety of related fields, including economic history, the history of consumption and material culture, art history, and the history of collecting, to explore changing concepts of value from the early modern period to the nineteenth century and present a new view on the advent of modern economic practices. Jointly, they fundamentally challenge traditional historical narratives about the rise of our contemporary market economy and consumer society.

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本书内容广泛,手法新奇而多样,作品中介绍的许多知识点神奇且鲜为人知。每篇童话后面还附有“阅读问号”和“百科贴士”两个板块,既为读者指明了阅读方向,也为读者提供了大量参考知识,使此书具有了百科全书的显明特点。(若使用Kobo eReader阅读,建议导入中文字体)

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