‘When Private Equity Serves the Public Good: Woody Holton’s Capitalist Constitution

Woody Holton, The Capitalist Constitution, in American Capitalism: New Histories (Sven Beckert and Christine Desan eds, 2019). Is capitalism good? A growing number of historians suggest no, particularly scholars affiliated with the New History of Capitalism, a trending field with close ties to Harvard and a deep interest in locating slavery at the center of the American experience. However, historian Woody Holton strums a more positive chord in his recent essay, ‘The Capitalist Constitution’, part of a larger anthology edited by Sven Beckert and Christine Desan styled American Capitalism: New Histories. Holton reminds us that the Framers’ anti-democratic interest in finance may not have been a bad thing, laying the foundations for a dynamic market economy that would propel the United States forward for the next two centuries … (more)

[Anders Walker, JOTWELL, 16 November]

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