Hand throwing crumpled dollar bills into pile

Extravagances of Neoliberalism

On how the fringe ideas of a set of American neoliberals became a new and pervasive way of life.
Illustration of a man typing on his laptop on a rollercoaster ride.

Work Sucks. What Could Salvage It?

New books examine the place of work in our lives—and how people throughout history have tried to change it.
The Tontine Building, Wall Street, New York, 1797.

From “Boring” to “Roaring” Banking

On the mechanics of Wall Street’s influence on key institutions of American democracy, from the New Deal to today.
Cover of "The Black Tax"

Tax History Matters: A Q&A with the Author of ‘The Black Tax’

The history of the property tax system and its structural defects that have led to widespread discrimination against Black Americans.
bags of money

Survival of the Wealthiest: Joseph E. Stiglitz on the Dangerous Failures of Neoliberalism

In which “the intellectual handmaidens of the capitalists” are taken to task.
At nighttime, the levels inside the Milton S. Eisenhower Library light up the windows, showing stacks of books and the silhouettes of students working at tables and lounging at chairs, from A Level to B Level and M Level at the top, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, 1965.

The Education Factory

By looking at the labor history of academia, you can see the roots of a crisis in higher education that has been decades in the making.
A advertisement for the BankAmericard depicting it as a card for the American family.

How Did America Become the Nation of Credit Cards?

Americans have always borrowed, but how exactly did their lives become so entangled with the power of plastic cards?
Starbucks workers on strike.

The Paradox of the American Labor Movement

It’s a great time to be in a union—but a terrible time to try to start a new one.
Uncle Sam on ladder hanging up Postal Savings Bank sign
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A People’s Bank at the Post Office

The Postal Savings System offered depositors a US government-backed guarantee of security, but it was undone by for-profit private banks.
Book cover of Counterrevolution by Melinda Cooper.

A Tax Haven in a Heartless World: On Melinda Cooper’s “Counterrevolution”

Why should taxpayers fund schools that violate their own values, the Moms for Liberty wonder? A new book traces how this kind of thinking about public spending came to be.
Boiling House at the Sugar Plantation Asunción, Cuba, 1857.

Slavery Was Crucial for the Development of Capitalism

Historian Robin Blackburn has completed a trilogy of books that provide a comprehensive Marxist account of slavery in the New World.
A gun shop in Dunedin, Florida.

America Fell for Guns Recently, and for Reasons You Will Not Guess

The US today has extraordinary levels of gun ownership. But to see this as a venerable tradition is to misread history.
Two men carrying a weakened hunger striker.

Remembering the 1932 Ford Hunger March: Detroit Park Honors Labor and Environmental History

On March 7, workers at the Ford Rouge River plant marched for better working conditions. Almost a century later, a quiet park honors their memory.
"Soulsville" mural in Memphis, Tennessee.

Capitalism and (Under)Development in the American South

In the American South, an oligarchy of planters enriched itself through slavery. Pervasive underdevelopment is their legacy.
University of Michigan women’s basketball team, 1977
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This Is Standby Alert

The history of the battle to keep Title IX out of college sports.
Cover page of an AP Psychology exam

Bankrupt Authority

Advanced Placement testing is "a money-making racket that lets states off the hook for underfunding education."
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1933 presidential inauguration.

The First New Deal

Planning, market coordination, and the National Industrial Recovery Act of 1933.
Illustration of a literary rejection letter.

There Is No Point in My Being Other Than Honest with You: On Toni Morrison’s Rejection Letters

Autopsies of a changing publishing industry; frustrations with readers' tastes; and sympathies for poets and authors drawn to commercially hopeless genres.
Orange cider booth at the World's Fair.

The Hottest Drink of the 1893 World's Fair Was an Artificial Orange 'Cider'

"You're drinking something that some guy just cobbled together out of Lake Michigan water and food dye.”
Law and Political Economy Project

Recovering the Left-Wing Free Trade Tradition

Free trade has been defended primarily by neoliberals who cared little about social justice or democracy. An examination of its history paints a different picture.
The Hollywood sign replaced with the words "The End."

The Life and Death of Hollywood

Film and television writers face an existential threat.
Branko Milanovic, 2017.

The Problematic Past, Present, and Future of Inequality Studies

An intellectual history of inequality in economic theory reveals the ideological reasons behind the field’s resurgence in the last few decades.
Etching of friends playing a game of chess, dated to the nineteenth century.

Get Capitalists’ Grubby Hands Off Our Hobbies

Christian moralists long promoted hobbies as a way to occupy idle hands, bringing the work ethic into free time. Today hobbies risk turning into side hustles.
The United Farm Worker’s 1,000 Mile March, 1975.

How Unions Are Made

A new history of labor organizing in Coachella tells us the story of the United Farm Workers and how its rank-and-file members drove the union to success.
Title card of the cartoon, featuring FDR committing money to a federal housing program.

The Tragedy and Tenacity of Public Housing in America

A cartoon report on the only policy proven to address the housing shortage and how racism, inept management, and disinvestment led to long-term decline.
An assortment of Girl Scout cookies.

The Truth Behind the Girl Scout Cookie Graveyard

Even popular cookies can end up permanently cut from the roster.
The cover of "Beyond Norma Rae" by Aimee Loiselle

Who Makes the American Working Class: Women Workers and Culture

Female industrial workers across the country and from diverse racial backgrounds fought to tell their own stories.
Depositors of a failed bank hold a protest during the Great Depression.

A Decisive Influence: The American Public’s Role in Financial Regulation

The history of grassroots banking politics has been overlooked — and even denied.
Continental Congress voting for independence.

Mother’s Milk of the Revolution

Right from the beginning, a commercial spirit and the wealth it generated were essential to creating and constituting America.

The Deep and Enduring History of Universal Basic Income

While the concept stretches back centuries, it has garnered significant attention in recent decades.