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Ho, Karen Zouwen, 1971-
Liquidated : an ethnography of Wall Street / Karen Ho
Durham : Duke University Press, 2009
book jacket
Location Call Number Status
 3rd Floor  HD8039.S432 U68 2009    AVAILABLE
Subject(s) Securities industry -- United States -- Employees
Stockbrokers -- United States
Investment banking -- United States
Downsizing of organizations -- United States
Physical Description xiii, 374 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm
Note "A John Hope Franklin Center Book."
Includes bibliographical references (p. [325]-368) and index
Contents Anthropology goes to Wall Street -- Biographies of hegemony : the culture of smartness and the recruitment and construction of investment bankers -- Wall Street's orientation : exploitation, empowerment, and the politics of hard work -- Wall Street historiographies and the shareholder value revolution -- The neoclassical roots and origin narratives of shareholder value -- Downsizers downsized : job insecurity and investment banking corporate culture -- Liquid lives, compensation schemes, and the making of (unsustainable) financial markets -- Leveraging dominance and crises through the global
Summary Financial collapses - whether of the junk bond market, the Internet bubble, or the highly leveraged housing market - are often explained as the inevitable result of market cycles: What goes up must come down. In Liquidated, Karen Ho punctures the aura of the abstract, all-powerful market to show how financial markets, and particularly booms and busts, are constructed. Through an in-depth investigation into the everyday experiences and ideologies of Wall Street investment bankers, Ho describes how a financially dominant but highly unstable market system is understood, justified, and produced through the restructuring of corporations and the larger economy. Ho, who worked at an investment bank herself, argues that bankers' approaches to financial markets and corporate America are inseparable from the structures and strategies of their workplaces. Her ethnographic analysis of those workplaces is filled with the voices of stressed first-year associates, overworked and alienated analysts, undergraduates eager to be hired, and seasoned managing directors

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