Feb 13

How the West got rich and modern capitalism was born

"We need to qualify the fairy tale we like to tell about capitalism and free labor," argues Harvard historian Sven Beckert, author of the new book, "Empire of Cotton." In part two of his essay on Making Sen$e, he explores…

Feb 12

America’s first big business? Not the railroads, but slavery

For too long, historian Sven Beckert argues, historians have depicted slavery as a non-capitalist "Southern pathology." In his new book, "Empire of Cotton," Beckert shows how slavery was actually at the very roots of modern American capitalism.

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