Silver mining was a capitalist business long before the supposed origin of modern capitalism
Hundreds of years before a sixteenth-century crisis in European agriculture led to the origins of capital, investment, and finance, the silver mining industry exhibited many of the features of modern capitalism. Silver mines were large-scale businesses that demanded large investments and steady cash flow, achieved by spreading that risk through fungible shares and creating legal structures to protect entrepreneurs from financial disaster. Jeannette Graulau argues that mining preceded agriculture as the first true capitalist enterprise of the modern world.
Jeannette Graulau is associate professor of political science at Herbert H. Lehman College, The City University of New York.
Informations pratiques :
Jeannette Graulau, The Underground Wealth of Nations. On the Capitalist Origins of Silver Mining, A.D. 1150-1450, Yale University Press, 2019. 392 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4. 40 b/w illus. ISBN: 9780300218220. Prix : 85,00 $.
Source : Yale University Press