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Economics in PerspectiveA Critical History$
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John Kenneth Galbraith

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691171647

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691171647.001.0001

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The Separate Personality of Money

The Separate Personality of Money

(p.154) Chapter 12 The Separate Personality of Money
Economics in Perspective

John Kenneth Galbraith

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the role of money and its management, the origins of what is known today as monetarism. It first provides a brief history of money, focusing on the steps that accorded money its separate and distinctive personality, including the establishment of banks; borrowing and the resulting act of money creation; and the realization by kings, princes and parliaments that the creation of money could be used as a substitute for taxes or as an alternative to borrowing from financiers. It then considers the significance of the institutions and experience surrounding money, along with the economic thought and controversy that money has evoked. In particular, it looks at precipitating factors that shaped American attitudes on money in the nineteenth century, including the Greenbacks and silver. Finally, it describes the role of money in facilitating exchange by taking into account the equation of exchange introduced by American economist Irving Fisher.

Keywords:   money, monetarism, banks, borrowing, taxes, Greenbacks, silver, exchange, Irving Fisher

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