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Personal credit relations were ubiquitous in English consumer markets, binding family members, friends, neighbours, customers and tradesmen in tangled lines of mutual obligation. In this study of the social history of personal debt and credit, Margot Finn reveals the pre-eminence of social individuals - men, women and children whose ability to engage in credit contracts was contingent upon their dependent social status. Using a wide range of printed and manuscript sources, and paying particular attention to distinctions of gender and of class, Finn examines English consumer culture from three interlocking perspectives: representations of debt in novels, diaries and autobiographical memoirs; the transformation of imprisonment for debt; and the use of small claims courts to mediate disputes between debtors and creditors. This major study of personal debt from 1740 to 1914 will appeal to social, legal and cultural historians, literary scholars and those interested in the history of consumer culture.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521036498
ISBN-10: 0521036496
Format: Paperback
(228mm x 152mm x 21mm)
Pages: 376
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 18-Oct-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Margot C. Finn

Margot C. Finn is Warwick Research Fellow and Reader in History at the University of Warwick. She is the author of After Chartism: Class and Nation in English Radical Politics, 1848-1874 (CUP, 1993).

Books By Author Margot C. Finn

After Chartism by Margot C. Finn

After Chartism

Paperback, January 2004
Character of Credit by Margot C. Finn

The Character of Credit

Hardback, August 2003