On the Dark Side of the Market

Alex Preda

in Framing Finance

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print July 2009 | ISBN: 9780226679310
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226679334 | DOI:
On the Dark Side of the Market

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This chapter examines the double game of relentless increases in efficiency. The notion that financial speculation is endowed with a special force, which justifies its economic functions, is echoed in the tension between thrilling speculation, on the one hand, and the hard work of everyday capitalist accumulation, on the other hand, as well as in the representation of super human speculators. They are rather part and parcel of the observation lens set in place by writers of investment manuals and stock exchange histories, a lens through which the individual actors of the exchange can be seen in their relationship with entities such as the state, the economy, and the society at large. While such a lens can and does include elements such as educational fiction it does not primarily claim esthetic autonomy. Its aim is not contemplation and reflection as such, but observation as a path to action. Debates and controversies around the status of financial speculation and of speculators evolve around topics set within the boundaries of finance, not by a neutral or adversarial instance, and certainly not by a contemplative, reflexive one.

Keywords: financial speculation; dark side of market; economic functions; capitalist accumulation; super human speculators; stock exchange histories

Chapter.  6388 words. 

Subjects: Sociology

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