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The Global Bourgeoisie

The Rise of the Middle Classes in the Age of Empire

Christof Dejung, David Motadel, Jürgen Osterhammel, et al.

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Geisteswissenschaften, Kunst, Musik / Geschichte


The first global history of the middle class

While the nineteenth century has been described as the golden age of the European bourgeoisie, the emergence of the middle class and bourgeois culture was by no means exclusive to Europe. The Global Bourgeoisie explores the rise of the middle classes around the world during the age of empire. Bringing together eminent scholars, this landmark essay collection compares middle-class formation in various regions, highlighting differences and similarities, and assesses the extent to which bourgeois growth was tied to the increasing exchange of ideas and goods. The contributors indicate that the middle class was from its very beginning, even in Europe, the result of international connections and entanglements.

Essays are grouped into six thematic sections: the political history of middle-class formation, the impact of imperial rule on the colonial middle class, the role of capitalism, the influence of religion, the obstacles to the middle class beyond the Western and colonial world, and, lastly, reflections on the creation of bourgeois cultures and global social history. Placing the establishment of middle-class society into historical context, this book shows how the triumph or destabilization of bourgeois values can shape the liberal world order.

The Global Bourgeoisie irrevocably changes the understanding of how an important social class came to be.



South Asia, Bureaucrat, Sociology, Ottoman Empire, New Society, Middle class, Globalization, Slavery, Writing, Lawyer, Philanthropy, Commodity, Economy, Historiography, Racism, Tax, Civil society, Criticism, Globality, Western culture, High culture, Abolitionism, Latin America, Politics, Civil service, Harvard University Press, Islam, Decolonization, Democratization, Imperialism, Europe, Westernization, Ann Laura Stoler, The Other Hand, Oxford University Press, Subaltern (postcolonialism), Modern history, Apprenticeship, Upper middle class, Wealth, Civilization, Patriotism, Anti-imperialism, New class, Cambridge University Press, Of Education, Aristocracy, Free trade, Social structure, East Africa, Backwardness, Yale University Press, Petite bourgeoisie, Routledge, Upper class, Industrialisation, Social class, Government, Modernity, Western Europe, War, Class conflict, American middle class, Working class, Marxism, Political science, Princeton University Press, Institution, Western world, Colonialism, Comprador, Hegemony, Frederick Cooper (historian), Social issue, Bourgeoisie, Associate professor, Middle-class values, Public sphere, Cultural capital, Social status, British Empire, Ruling class, Division of labour, Reza Shah, Employment, Metropole, Nation state, Liberalism, Germans, Gender role, Civilizing mission, Intelligentsia, Authoritarianism, Ideology, Social history, Despotism, Urbanization, Jews, Newspaper, Capitalism