America's First Great Depression: Economic Crisis And Political Disorder After The Panic Of 1837 by Alasdair RobertsAmerica's First Great Depression: Economic Crisis And Political Disorder After The Panic Of 1837 by Alasdair Roberts

America's First Great Depression: Economic Crisis And Political Disorder After The Panic Of 1837

byAlasdair Roberts

Paperback | May 14, 2013

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For a while, it seemed impossible to lose money on real estate. But then the bubble burst. The financial sector was paralyzed and the economy contracted. State and federal governments struggled to pay their domestic and foreign creditors. Washington was incapable of decisive action. The country seethed with political and social unrest. In America's First Great Depression, Alasdair Roberts describes how the United States dealt with the economic and political crisis that followed the Panic of 1837.

As Roberts shows, the two decades that preceded the Panic had marked a democratic surge in the United States. However, the nation's commitment to democracy was tested severely during this crisis. Foreign lenders questioned whether American politicians could make the unpopular decisions needed on spending and taxing. State and local officials struggled to put down riots and rebellion. A few wondered whether this was the end of America's democratic experiment.

Roberts explains how the country's woes were complicated by its dependence on foreign trade and investment, particularly with Britain. Aware of the contemporary relevance of this story, Roberts examines how the country responded to the political and cultural aftershocks of 1837, transforming its political institutions to strike a new balance between liberty and social order, and uneasily coming to terms with its place in the global economy.

Alasdair Roberts is the Jerome L. Rappaport Professor of Law and Public Policy at Suffolk University Law School in Boston, Massachusetts. He is also a Fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Public Administration. He is the author of America's First Great Depression andThe End of Protest: How Free-Market Capitalism Learned to Control D...
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Title:America's First Great Depression: Economic Crisis And Political Disorder After The Panic Of 1837Format:PaperbackDimensions:264 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.2 inPublished:May 14, 2013Publisher:CORNELL UNIVERSITY PRESSLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801478863

ISBN - 13:9780801478864

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Back to the Future

1. Boom and Bust
Hard times
Gauging the losses
The bubble
The collapse

2. The States' Crisis
Defaulting on state debts
Disgrace in Europe
Shackling the states

3. The Federal Government's Crisis
Gridlock in Washington
The fraying national compact
Losing the arms race
Reconciling with the superpower

4. Law and Order
Rebellion in Rhode Island
The anti- rent war
Cannon fire in Philadelphia
Building civic armies

5. The End of the Crisis
A proxy war in Mexico
Redemption

Conclusion: Freedom, Order, and Economic Crisis

Note on Method and Acknowledgments
Notes
Index

Editorial Reviews

"America's First Great Depression is an intriguing history of American financial policy in the 1830s and 1840s. Alasdair Roberts’s contention that international financial considerations shaped U.S. policymaking is well sustained, the writing is sprightly, and the argument is nicely documented with a wealth of judiciously culled evidence."—Richard R. John, Columbia University, author of Network Nation: Inventing American Telecommunications