The Market as a Social Space: On the Meaningful Extraeconomic Conversations that Can Occur in Markets

16 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2010 Last revised: 20 Nov 2010

See all articles by Virgil Henry Storr

Virgil Henry Storr

George Mason University - Department of Economics; George Mason University - Mercatus Center; University of Arizona Center for the Philosophy of Freedom

Date Written: January 7, 2008

Abstract

Prominent economic sociologist Richard Swedberg has argued that economists have failed to develop a theory of the market that recognizes it as a “social phenomenon in its own right.” While this may be true of mainstream economics, the Austrian school’s theory of the market is much richer than the standard view. For Austrians, the market has always been a central concern. And Austrians have always argued that the market is a social structure where both exchange and competition occurs. Still, Austrians give little more than scant attention to the noneconomic sociality that occurs in markets. The market, however, is both a conversation and an arena where meaningful conversations can occur. This paper is an effort to focus attention on the market as a social space where social activity (beyond competition and exchange) takes place and where noneconomic relationships and economic relationships develop.

Keywords: The Market, Social Space, Swedberg, Lefebvre, Gudeman, Granovetter

JEL Classification: B25, B41, 054, Z13

Suggested Citation

Storr, Virgil Henry, The Market as a Social Space: On the Meaningful Extraeconomic Conversations that Can Occur in Markets (January 7, 2008). Review of Austrian Economics, Vol. 21, Nos. 2 & 3, pp. 135-150, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1708520

Virgil Henry Storr (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

George Mason University - Mercatus Center ( email )

3434 Washington Blvd., 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

University of Arizona Center for the Philosophy of Freedom ( email )

Department of History
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

HOME PAGE: http://virgilstorr.org/

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