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The Incorporation of America

Culture and Society in the Gilded Age

Alan Trachtenberg

Hill and Wang

Today, hardly any realm of American life is untouched by the culture of corporations: politics, education, family life, literature, the arts. When did this happen and what were its effects? Alan Trachtenberg traces the expansion of capitalist power in the last third of the nineteenth century and the cultural changes it brought in its wake.
 
By examining the major socioeconomic issues of the day—westward expansion, labor unrest, the rise of the cities, and mechanization—Trachtenberg shows how the ideals and ideas by which Americans lived were reshaped and society emerged more structured, with an entrenched middle class and a powerful business elite. This twenty-fifth anniversary edition with a new preface is a discerning analysis of the origins of America's corporate culture and the formation of American social fabric after the civil war.

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Praise for The Incorporation of America

"The Incorporation of America is one of those historical essays that not only illuminate their particular subject matter--in this case, American culture and society in the last half of the nineteenth century--but deepen our understanding of how we might think about the general question of 'culture' itself." --Warren I. Susman, Rutgers University

"This book realizes an ideal often mentioned as the goal of American Studies but seldom achieved: it is a truly 'interdisciplinary' account of American culture at a turning point in our history. Mr. Trachtenberg is not merely a scholar, he is a writer. Reading is a pleasure, not a duty." --Henry Nash Smith, University of California at Berkeley

"This graceful venture in cultural history provides a fresh and stimulating interpretation of American society during the last decades of the nineteenth century." --John M. Blum, Yale University

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Alan Trachtenberg

  • Alan Trachtenberg is the Neil Gray Jr. Professor Emeritus of English and American studies at Yale University, where he taught for thirty-five years. His books include Shades of Hiawatha (H&W, 2004).
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    The Incorporation of America

    Culture and Society in the Gilded Age

    Alan Trachtenberg

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    Hill and Wang

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