Economic and Business History

Economic and Business History


Interviews with scholars of economic and business history about their new books.

Jonathan Chatwin, "The Southern Tour: Deng Xiaoping and the Fight for China's Future" (Bloomsbury, 2024)

April 18, 2024

The Southern Tour

Jonathan Chatwin
Hosted by Nicholas Gordon

Deng Xiaoping’s 1992 Southern Tour has become a milestone in Chinese economic history. Historians and commentators credit Deng’s visit to Guangzhou Pr…

Liz Tregenza, "Wholesale Couture: London and Beyond, 1930-70" (Bloombury, 2023)

April 17, 2024

Wholesale Couture

Liz Tregenza
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Wholesale Couture: London and Beyond, 1930-70 (Bloomsbury, 2023) by Dr. Liz Tregenza seeks to revise the notion that wholesale couturiers were simply …

Steven Ujifusa, "The Last Ships from Hamburg: Business, Rivalry, and the Race to Save Russia's Jews on the Eve of World War I" (HarperCollins, 2023)

April 15, 2024

The Last Ships from Hamburg

Steven Ujifusa
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

Over thirty years, from 1890 to 1921, 2.5 million Jews, fleeing discrimination and violence in their homelands of Eastern Europe, arrived in the Unite…

Jeremy Black, "The Atlantic Slave Trade in World History" (Routledge, 2015)

April 14, 2024

The Atlantic Slave Trade in World History

Jeremy Black
Hosted by Charles Coutinho

In The Atlantic Slave Trade in World History (Routledge, 2015), Jeremy Black presents a compact yet comprehensive survey of slavery and its impact on …

100 Years of Radio in South Africa: Then and Now

April 11, 2024

100 Years of Radio in South Africa

Sisanda Nkoala

Today’s book is: 100 Years of Radio in South Africa, Volume 1: South African Radio Stations and Broadcasters Then & Now (Palgrave MacMillan, 2023), ed…

Robert M. Jarvis, "Gambling Under the Swastika: Casinos, Horse Racing, Lotteries, and Other Forms of Betting in Nazi Germany" (Carolina Academic Press, 2019)

April 9, 2024

Gambling Under the Swastika

Robert M. Jarvis
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

Although much has been written about the Nazis, one aspect of their rule has been all but overlooked: gambling. While philosophically opposed to gambl…

Sean Vanatta on Credit Cards

April 8, 2024

Sean Vanatta on Credit Cards

Sean H. Vanatta
Hosted by Lee Vinsel

Peoples & Things host, Lee Vinsel, talks with historian and standup comedian, Sean Vanatta, lecturer in economic and social history at the University …

Marc Edelman, "Peasant Politics of the Twenty-First Century: Transnational Social Movements and Agrarian Change" (Cornell UP, 2024)

April 6, 2024

Peasant Politics of the Twenty-First Century

Marc Edelman
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Peasant Politics of the Twenty-First Century: Transnational Social Movements and Agrarian Change (Cornell University Press, 2024) by Dr. Marc Edelman …

Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway, "The Big Myth: How American Business Taught Us to Loathe Government and Love the Free Market" (Bloomsbury. 2023)

April 5, 2024

The Big Myth

Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway

In their bestselling book Merchants of Doubt, Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway revealed the origins of climate change denial. Now, in The Big Myth: Ho…

Naomi Cahn, et al., "Fair Shake: Women and the Fight to Build a Just Economy" (Simon & Schuster, 2023)

April 3, 2024

Fair Shake

Naomi Cahn, June Carbone. and Nancy Levit
Hosted by Deidre Tyler

A stirring, comprehensive look at the state of women in the workforce--why women's progress has stalled, how our economy fosters unproductive competit…

Robert Bruno, "What Work Is" (U Illinois Press, 2024)

April 1, 2024

What Work Is

Robert Bruno
Hosted by Thomas Discenna

Robert Bruno is a professor of labor and employment relations at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where he also serves as Director of the …

Oliver Wunsch, "A Delicate Matter: Art, Fragility, and Consumption in Eighteenth-Century France" (Penn State UP, 2024)

March 31, 2024

A Delicate Matter

Oliver Wunsch
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Eighteenth-century France witnessed an unprecedented proliferation of materially unstable art, from oil paintings that cracked within years of their c…

Jamie Goodall, "Daring Exploits of Pirate Black Sam Bellamy: From Cape Cod to the Caribbean" (History Press, 2023)

March 29, 2024

Daring Exploits of Pirate Black Sam Bellamy

Jamie Goodall
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

In 1717, the Council of Trade and Plantations received "agreeable news" from New England. "Bellamy with his ship and Company" had perished on the shoa…

Rachel S. Gross, "Shopping All the Way to the Woods: How the Outdoor Industry Sold Nature to America" (Yale UP, 2024)

March 26, 2024

Shopping All the Way to the Woods

Rachel S. Gross
Hosted by Brian Hamilton

Rachel S. Gross's Shopping All the Ways to the Woods (Yale University Press, 2024) tells the fascinating history of the profitable paradox of the Amer…

Jeffrey A. Javed, "Righteous Revolutionaries: Morality, Mobilization, and Violence in the Making of the Chinese State" (U Michigan Press, 2022)

March 23, 2024

Righteous Revolutionaries

Jeffrey A. Javed
Hosted by Yadong Li

In an era where states and politicians regularly weaponize moral emotions to foment intergroup conflict and violence, understanding the dynamics of vi…

John William Nelson, "Muddy Ground: Native Peoples, Chicago's Portage, and the Transformation of a Continent" (UNC Press, 2023)

March 23, 2024

Muddy Ground

John William Nelson
Hosted by Stephen Hausmann

The birchbark canoe is among the most remarkable Indigenous technologies in North America, facilitating mobility throughout the watery world of the Gr…

Marc-William Palen, "Pax Economica: Left-Wing Visions of a Free Trade World" (Princeton UP, 2024)

March 23, 2024

Pax Economica

Marc-William Palen
Hosted by Thomas Kingston

A new economic history which uncovers the forgotten left-wing, anti-imperial, pacifist origins of economic cosmopolitanism and free trade from the mid…

Anelise Hanson Shrout, "Aiding Ireland: The Great Famine and the Rise of Transnational Philanthropy" (NYU Press, 2024)

March 22, 2024

Aiding Ireland

Anelise Hanson Shrout
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Famine brought ruin to the Irish countryside in the nineteenth century. In response, people around the world and from myriad social, ethnic, and relig…

Heather Akou, "On the Job: A History of American Work Uniforms" (Bloomsbury, 2024)

March 21, 2024

On the Job

Heather Akou
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Through a variety of archival documents, artefacts, illustrations, and references to primary and secondary literature, On the Job: A History of Americ…

Matthias Doepke and Fabrizio Zilibotti, "Love, Money, and Parenting: How Economics Explains the Way We Raise Our Kids" (Princeton UP, 2019)

March 20, 2024

Love, Money, and Parenting

Matthias Doepke and Fabrizio Zilibotti

Parents everywhere want their children to be happy and do well. Yet how parents seek to achieve this ambition varies enormously. For instance, America…