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The Agrarian Origins of American Capitalism

Allan Kulikoff
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Allan Kulikoff's provocative new book traces the rural origins and growth of capitalism in America, challenging earlier scholarship and charting a new course for future studies in history and economics. Kulikoff argues that long before the explosive growth of cities and big factories, capitalism in the countryside changed our society- the ties between men and women, the relations between different social classes, the rhetoric of the yeomanry, slave migration, and frontier settlement. He challenges the received wisdom that associates the birth of capitalism wholly with New York, Philadelphia, and Boston and show how studying the critical market forces at play in farm and village illuminates the defining role of the yeomen class in the origins of capitalism.