English Language & Literature
co-edited with Audrey Jaffe and Sarah Winter
ABOUT THE BOOK
In this edited volume, Elaine Hadley and her co-editors make a case for connecting literary analysis and economic theory in an effort to “restore social content to economic abstractions.” The collected chapters read a key concept in economics, such as “human capital,” or a pressing social issue, such as “exploitation,” through the lens of a classic 19th century novel. Pieces such as Hadley’s own chapter, “Becker the Obscure: Human Capital Theory, Liberalisms, and the Future of Higher Education” – which, as the title suggests, reads economist Gary Becker through Thomas Hardy’s Jude the Obscure – feel even more timely now as we witness unemployment rise rapidly during the COVID-19 pandemic. This volume highlights some of the themes in Hadley’s monograph-in-progress, The Dismal Science of Economics and the Lost Art of Political Economy.
Hear more from Elaine Hadley on the Franke Institute Podcast.
"From Political Economy to Economics Through Nineteenth-Century Literature encourages readers to rediscover social concerns that mainstream economists often overlook—within both economic concepts and literary texts. Tough-minded and perceptive, the essays open new ways to connect literary analysis and economic theory. An important contribution to the humanities and social sciences.”
— Mary Poovey,
Samuel Rudin University Professor in the Humanities, Professor of English, New York University
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elaine Hadley is a Professor in English Language and Literature at the University of Chicago. She teaches and writes about nineteenth-century British culture, as well as popular culture broadly defined (theater, journalism, cheap fiction) and political culture, especially liberalism as a social formation. She is the author of Living Liberalism, which addresses Victorian political culture through political theory, theories of embodiment and the material practices of citizenship. Her research interests--gender theory, urban studies, the novel, melodrama, children's culture, theories of nationalism and histories of affect--are often evident in the courses she teaches.