The Social Meaning of Money

By Viviana A. Zelizer,

Book cover of The Social Meaning of Money: Pin Money, Paychecks, Poor Relief, and Other Currencies

Book description

A dollar is a dollar--or so most of us believe. Indeed, it is part of the ideology of our time that money is a single, impersonal instrument that impoverishes social life by reducing relations to cold, hard cash. After all, it's just money. Or is it? Distinguished social scientist and…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Social Meaning of Money as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Viviana Zelizer opened the world of money and relationships for me. I read her when I was doing my doctoral thesis on money, banking, and Anglo-Celtic consumers in Australia. 

Her basic tenet is that money is a social phenomenon. Money shapes and is shaped by social relationships and cultural values. Viviana’s work helped transform my thesis about banking to that of money and marriage.

It was my first step to becoming a sociologist of money and discovering how researching money opens the whole field of human relationships. 

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