The Company by John Micklethwait
A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea (Modern Library Chronicles)

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From the acclaimed authors of A Future Perfect comes the untold story of how the company became the world’s most powerful institution.

Like all groundbreaking books, The Company fills a hole we didn’t know existed, revealing that we cannot make sense of the past four hundred years until we place that seemingly humble Victorian innovation, the joint-stock company, in the center of the frame.

With their trademark authority and wit, Economist editors John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge reveal the company to be one of history’s great catalysts, for good and for ill, a mighty engine for sucking in, recombining, and pumping out money, goods, people, and culture to every corner of the globe. What other earthly invention has the power to grow to any size, and to live to any age? What else could have given us both the stock market and the British Empire? The company man, the company town, and company time? Disneyfication and McDonald’sization, to say nothing of Coca-colonialism? Through its many mutations, the company has always incited controversy, and governments have always fought to rein it in. Today, though Marx may spin in his grave and anarchists riot in the streets, the company exercises an unparalleled influence on the globe, and understanding what this creature is and where it comes from has never been a more pressing matter. To the rescue come these acclaimed authors, with a short volume of truly vast range and insight.

From the Hardcover edition.

About John Micklethwait

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John Micklethwait oversees coverage of the United States for The Economist. He lives in London. Adrian Wooldridge works for The Economist in Washington, D.C. They are coauthors of A Future Perfect: The Challenge and Promise of Globalization and The Witch Doctors: Making Sense of the Management Gurus.From the Hardcover edition.
Published March 4, 2003 by Modern Library. 256 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, History. Non-fiction

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The Virginia Company transported goods to and from the American colonies while encouraging democratic ideas that helped get the king’s hand out of the till—for which reason James I called the firm “a seminary for a seditious parliament.” Fueled by a logic that the economist Ronald Coase identifie...

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Publishers Weekly

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Companies were behind the slave trade, opium and imperialism, and the British East India Company ruled the subcontinent with its standing army of native troops, outmanning the British army two to one.

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The creation of the company led to the advent of all the concepts and tools of business we take for granted today: the idea of management itself, the concept of raising funds from the public through the flogging of stocks and bonds, the introduction of labor unions as a countervailing power, the ...

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