The virtuous marketplace : women and men, money and politics in Paris, 1830-1870 /
Victoria E. Thompson.
Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000.
viii, 229 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
0801864143 (alk. paper)
More Details
Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000.
0801864143 (alk. paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Victoria E. Thompson is an assistant professor of history at Arizona State University.
Review Quotes
"Provides us with one very interesting and useful model of how cultural history can be done without losing all ties to the concreteness and specificity that social history, in its limited way, opened up."--William M. Reddy, H-France
"The Virtuous Marketplace is an in-depth examination of how the bourgeoisie used gender and class in the nineteenth century to redefine which types of economic activities were honorable and which types were not. Thompson's argument should be considered by all who work on questions of gender and economic change in the modern period." -- Montserrat Miller, Journal of Social History
"The Virtuous Marketplace makes a welcome contribution to historical gender studies with a complex approach to social history. It offers a new perspective on gender and markets that will prove useful to social historians and literary scholars alike." -- Aimée Boutin, French Review
"The Virtuous Marketplace offers fresh and compelling insights into the market's role in forging new definitions of femininity and masculinity as well as into the uses of gender in France's difficult assimilation to market society." -- Lisa Tiersten, Nineteenth-Century French Studies
"Breaks new ground in the study of gender and the marketplace and will be at the forefront of modern French history. It will also have a broad impact beyond the study of France to an understanding of the cultural history of markets in Western Europe and the relationship of gender concepts to the development of the market economy."--Rachel G. Fuchs, author of Poor and Pregnant in Paris: Strategies for Survival in the Nineteenth Century
This item was reviewed in:
Reference & Research Book News, May 2001
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Main Description
In late-eighteenth-century France, the "free market" was hailed as a powerful alternative to absolutism. But by the 1830s, social upheaval caused by repeated revolution and by industrialization led many to call this model into question. Associating freedom with licentiousness and individualism with selfishness, these French critics of the free market developed an alternative model, in which freedom was replaced with self-control and individualism with selflessness. In The Virtuous Marketplace Victoria Thompson explores how this process developed, paying special attention to the changing roles of women in the markets of mid-nineteenth-century Paris. She shows how French women, whose dual economic role as producers and consumers had previously been taken as a matter of course, became the object of a growing fear of the market as a source of social unrest. At the same time, the image of the economically dependent woman became useful to those who demanded higher pay for male "breadwinners." Ultimately, the figure of the prostitute was used to characterize the dangers of the public market, providing the basis for its regulation and for the exclusion of women from it.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
The Free Woman female sexuality and economic libertyp. 15
Work, Wages, and Citizenship in the 1840sp. 52
Policing the Free Market gender, class, and the control of urban spacep. 86
The Lorette speculation and the social orderp. 131
Conclusionp. 170
Notesp. 179
Select Bibliography of Primary Sourcesp. 213
Indexp. 225
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

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